Monday, June 30, 2008

What Could Be A Nightmare for Oprah...


On the set of Oprah: Stage is set with couches enough to seat the heroines from author, Ginger Simpson’s historical novels.

Oprah takes the stage:
The applause sign is lit. She raises her hands for silence.
“Thank you, thank you, and welcome to our show. Today we’re lucky to have the lovely heroines straight from the pages of author, Ginger Simpson’s, western historicals.”

More applause: “So let’s bring them out in the order that Ginger introduced them to us: Cecile from Prairie Peace, Mariah and Taylor from Sisters in Time, Grace from White Heart, Lakota Spirit and Sarah from Sarah’s Journey. We had planned to have Ellie Fountain join us from Sparta Rose, but there’s been a slight delay in the release date.”

The ladies take the stage, dressed in their long cotton dresses of various prints. The contrast between the hair colors may be a prediction of the differences of opinions about to be shared.

Guests are seated.


Oprah: “Welcome, ladies. I’m so glad you could all find time to join us today. I know there’s been a lot of chatter about which book is the best, so I couldn’t think of any better way than to let the heroines help us decide. Cecile, let’s start with you. Ginger featured you in her debut novel. What can tell us about it and why might someone favor it over another?

Cecile: I’m certain Prairie Peace is her favorite because it launched her into the writing world. Why else would she have given me two lovers? I had the best of both worlds, Indian and white.

Taylor: “Wait a minute. That doesn’t make you her favorite. Mariah and I changed eras and inherited each other’s husbands. Seems that we each had two men in our life, too worlds, actually. Nice try, though.”

Mariah: “Of course, I remained faithful to my husband.” She casts a leering look at Taylor.

Taylor: “Oh, get over Mariah. If you weren’t such an old-fashioned prude you would have enjoyed being in the twentieth century.” *Rolls her eyes*

Grace: “Ms. Winfry, I apologize for the rude behavior. There’s no doubt that Prairie Peace and Sisters in Time were wonderful reads, but my role in White Heart, Lakota Spirit was much more daring. I was captured by the Indians, saved by the cavalry, and then discovered I was expecting a baby. I’d love to tell you more, but that would be giving away the ending.”

Oprah: “Goodness, that sounds frightening. What was it like to live with the Indians back in the 1800s?”

Cecile: “She really didn’t know. She starred in the sequel to Prairie Peace and I taught her everything she knows about Indian life.”

Grace: “Not everything.” *frowns*

Cecile:
“Sorry, Grace. You were very young and naïve. You wouldn’t have lasted three chapters without my help.

Grace: “Well, I never.” *huffs*

Taylor: “Well, evidently you did. You said you got pregnant.”

Mariah: “Taylor, must you always be so crass?”

Oprah: “Ladies, ladies. We haven’t heard anything from Sarah yet. Sarah, won’t you tell us a little about your story?”

Sarah: “Thank you for asking. I refuse to act like these other women. I have a reputation to uphold.”

Taylor: *makes a face* “You’ve got to be kidding. Standards? Go ahead; tell Ms. Winfry how you traveled across country with a half-breed. Shared his blankets, I suppose.”

Sarah: “How dare you. I did no such thing. Sarah's Journey is a story about a woman's struggles and the unfairness of the time.”

Taylor: “Bet you wanted too, didn’t ya?”

Sarah: “That’s none of your business. Just because you have loose morals, that doesn’t mean the rest of us do.”

Mariah: “See, Taylor. I told you your mouth would get you into trouble. Didn’t I beg you to behave? David was right when he said his wife was a pain at times.”

Taylor: “Well, you should have heard what your husband said about you…especially in the bedroom.”

Cecile: “Really, you two shouldn’t even be here. Isn’t Sister’s in Time a time-travel?”

Taylor: “Yes, but with an historical twist, so we’re just as welcome here as you are.”

Grace: “Well, if you were invited, I don’t see why Cassie from Embezzled Love wasn’t."

Mariah: “Oh come now, Grace. That’s a contemporary. It has nothing to do with the historical genre.”

Taylor: “Holy shit, you and I finally agree on something, Mariah.”

Mariah: “Must you always talk like a drunken sailor?”

Taylor: “What do you know about drunken sailors? If you’d said that in the book, the editors would have red-penned it. You know how picky they are about keeping your language and facts pertinent to the era.

Mariah: “You’re right. So, must you always talk like a trailhand? Is that better?”

Taylor: “Fu—”


Oprah: *Waving hands* Well, that about takes up our time for today. Before we cut to commercial, I’d just like to thank you all for taking time to visit with us. To Ellie, if you’re watching, I’ve heard that Tyler Bishop is quite a handsome hunk and that you really give him a run for his money. Hope you can visit with us sometime. Again, Ladies, thank you, and maybe next time we can find out more about your stories and less about your personalities. *smiles*

Cut

They Just Keep Coming

The latest from Trailmix Vidoes:

Sunday, June 29, 2008

Another Front Row Seat...



Having An Identity Crisis

Spencer is having a super hero identity crisis. He admires them all, and aspires to be each, depending on his mood. He dressed himself today, and here is sporting his "Incredibles" shirt, his brother's "spiderman" boxers, one "superman sock, and one spiderman sock. I tried not to gasp when he went outside like this, but this is Tennessee, after all. I've seen adults dressed in similar attire in Walmart, and not during Halloween. :)

Disregard the date...new camera, old operator. :)

Feel The EarthQuake Again?

Nope...it's just me happy dancing again. I couldn't wait until the original was posted at Kwips and Krits, so I'm sharing it now.



Sarah’s Journey

Ginger Simpson
ISBN: 978-1-897559-01-7
May 2008
Eternal Press
http://www.eternalpress.ca/sarahsjourney.html
Historical Romance/Western
Historical Women’s Fiction
eBook
Rating: * * * * ½

Sarah Collins has decided to leave her old life behind and joins a wagon train heading for California in the hopes of making a fresh start. When her train is attacked by an Indian war party, Sarah is the only survivor. Now she’s on a journey back to Independence in the hopes of finding another chance. When she is bit by a rattlesnake and figures her journey is over before it began, a very unlikely rescuer happens along.

Half-breed Grey Wolf was on his way to meet the wagon train and act as their scout when he finds the remains of the wagons and no survivors. Desperate to raise the money he needs to make his dream of owning his own land come true he had thought this was his chance. Now what is he to do when he is scorned by the white folk for his heritage and rejected by the Indians for the same reason? Wolf doesn’t fit anywhere, until he happens upon a lovely young woman dying of a snake bite.

Sarah and Wolf decide to travel together, with the same destination in mind of the city of Independence and along the way their camaraderie turns into something far more. Can they ever find happiness in a world that hates people like Wolf and those who love them?

Sarah’s Journey is a story about overcoming all the odds and finding your true purpose in life. Sarah had no hope if she’d stayed in town but rather than accept defeat, she defies all expectations and sets out on a new path that most women would be frowned upon for during this time period. Even when failure seems like the only answer, Sarah adapts and changes, showing a determination and a strength most people never get to discover in themselves. Sarah truly does overcome some very tough odds to find the happiness so long eluding her. Sarah’s Journey, while of the traditional sense, traveling from one place to another, is more about the journey through her own heart and soul. She could have given up, most people would, after experiencing what she did, but rather than let it hold her back, Sarah just trudges on through, keeping her faith God will see her through and help her make her own road. I loved her for that very reason. She makes me wonder if facing the same circumstances, could I overcome the difficulties like she did?

The love story between Sarah and Grey Wolf progresses slowly and sweetly. They go from reluctant travel mates to respect and friendship, and later on into life-changing love. Wolf and Sarah help other to see past the prejudices of the day to look deep inside people for their true value and to try and make others do the same. It’s an uphill struggle but that doesn’t stop them from trying!

Sarah’s Journey is most definitely not your typical romance. In fact, while the romance is obviously there, I’d classify this more as historical fiction. So the ending of the story is completely unlike anything you may imagine. When I finished the book, my first thought was “What?” Then after reading the epilogue and taking some time to reflect on the story that “What?” became a “Wow!” Any other conclusion would not have suited our friends Sarah and Wolf. So if you ask me, Sarah’s Journey couldn’t have ended any other way. Kudos to Ginger Simpson for writing such a moving and beautifully told story that challenges all expectations!

© Kelley A. Hartsell, June 2008. All rights reserved.

Your Ticket To:

My newest creation:

Saturday, June 28, 2008

Sharing an Article - Controversial Warning


The following was sent by a friend who still lives in California. I thought it might make an interesting post for my blog:

In today's Sacramento Bee the following letter was written:

Fire from heaven?
Do you remember when same-sex marriage was front-page news? Less than a week later, California was burning.
Legal same-sex marriage licenses began to be issued after Monday, June 16. As of June 25, statistics from www.fire.ca.gov show there are 1,026 fires in California. Furthermore, on the same day, the Associated Press reported, "In less than a day, an electrical storm unleashed nearly 8,000 lightning strikes that set more than 800 wildfires across Northern California - a rare example of 'dry lightning'."
The city of Sodom was destroyed by fire from heaven for the sin of sodomy (Holy Bible, Genesis 19). The word "Sodom" means "to scorch" or "burnt" (Strong's Bible Concordance, entry No. 5467). Could there by a link between these events?
Written by: Name withheld *lol* I'm sure you can check the Sacramento Bee if you really need to know.


Isn't it interesting how people can put a spin on issues with which they disagree? There are so many things I dislike in life, but it isn't my place to judge. I suspect if one looked up lightning strikes with relation to fire, they'd find an astounding amount every day, not just following this proclamation about gay marriages.

If God unleashed his anger about every immoral act like murder, drugs, prostitution, pornography, and child molestation, we'd have burnt up years ago. I'm not a gay advocate and I don't pry into what other people choose to do with their lives unless it harms me or my loved ones. Unless you walk a mile in someone else's shoes (to coin an old phrase), how can you possibly understand what motivates their actions and thoughts. Wouldn't time be better spent doing something positive rather than throwing stones at others? I believe the Bible had something to say about that..."Let he who is without sin cast the first stone." Boy, I'm not picking up any rocks anytime soon.

Even if you are a non-believer, how can you justify telling someone else what to do with their own life? We all aren't as perfect as we'd like to believe, and our souls are like a glass house. The reflection we think we project isn't always what others see. So, for those of you for which the Bible holds no meaning, how about "People who live in glass houses shouldn't throw stones." Personally, I'd rather concentrate energy on doing something about the other problems I mentioned. It's much more appalling to me to see headlines about children being abused, posed for pornography, or kidnapped and murdered over reading news about two people of the same sex who want their devotion to one another to be recognized. How on any possible scale does that measure up to those other atrocities?

Friday, June 27, 2008

Colonoscopy


It's the dreaded test that doctors suggest we have once we reach the age of fifty and then every five years. So why then do we all put it off? Because we've heard horrible things, we're afraid of what might be found, and for some reason, having a stranger access your 'rear panel' is far more embarrassing than any other bodily exam. At least that's my story, and I'm sticking to it.

The time has finally come that I'm forced to endure the injustice. I'm one of the stupid ones who waited until I started experiencing problems and seeing blood in the toilet. When it started to feel like I was passing razor blades, I realized I couldn't stall any longer. So...July 3rd, I'm scheduled for my exam.

Am I scared? Of course I am. Not so much of having the procedure as fearing what the doctor might find. I'll be praying between now and then that whatever the problem...it's minor and can be fixed with minimal surgery or meds. Like I said, I've always been a coward.

A good friend sent me this today...it made me laugh and gave me a positive outlook. Have a chuckle along with me...and I wouldn't mind a little prayer on my behalf if you are so inclined. Yes, "anon", I'm in need of attention again.

... I called my friend Andy Sable, a gastroenteritis, to make an appointment for a colonoscopy. A few days later, in his office, Andy showed me a color diagram of the colon, a lengthy organ that appears to go all over the place, at one point passing briefly through Minneapolis . Then Andy explained the colonoscopy procedure to me in
a thorough, reassuring and patient manner. I nodded thoughtfully, but I didn't really hear anything he said, because my brain was shrieking, quote, 'HE'S GOING TO STICK A TUBE 17,000 FEET UP YOUR BEHIND!'

I left Andy's office with some written instructions, and a prescription for a product called 'MoviPrep,' which comes in a box large enough to hold a microwave oven. I will discuss MoviPrep in detail later; for now suffice it to say that we must never allow it to fall into the hands of America 's enemies.

I spent the next several days productively sitting around being nervous. Then, on the day before my colonoscopy, I began my preparation. In accordance with my instructions, I didn't eat any solid food that day; all I had was chicken broth, which is basically water, only with less flavor. Then, in the evening, I took the
MoviPrep. You mix two packets of powder together in a one-liter plastic jug, then you fill it with lukewarm water. (For those unfamiliar with the metric system, a liter is about 32 gallons.) Then you have to drink the whole jug. This takes about an hour,
because MoviPrep tastes - and here I am being kind - like a mixture of goat spit and urinal cleanser, with just a hint of lemon.

The instructions for MoviPrep, clearly written by somebody with a great sense of humor, state that after you drink it, 'a loose watery bowel movement may result.' This is kind of like saying that after you jump off your roof, you may experience contact with the ground.

MoviPrep is a nuclear laxative. I don't want to be too graphic, here, but: Have you ever seen a space-shuttle launch? This is pretty much the MoviPrep experience, with you as the shuttle. There are times when you wish the commode had a seat belt. You spend several hours pretty much confined to the bathroom, spurting violently. You eliminate everything. And then, when you figure you must be totally empty, you have to drink another liter of MoviPrep, at which point, as far as I can tell, your
bowels travel into the future and start eliminating food that you have not even eaten yet.

After an action-packed evening, I finally got to sleep. The next morning my wife drove me to the clinic. I was very nervous. Not only was I worried about the procedure, but I had been experiencing occasional return bouts of MoviPrep spurtage. I was thinking, 'What if I spurt on Andy?' How do you apologize to a friend for something like that? Flowers would not be enough.

At the clinic I had to sign many forms acknowledging that I understood and totally agreed with whatever the heck the forms said. Then they led me to a room full of other colonoscopy people, where I went inside a little curtained space and took off my clothes and put on one of those hospital garments designed by sadist perverts, the kind that, when you put it on, makes you feel even more naked than when you are
actually naked.

Then a nurse named Eddie put a little needle in a vein in my left hand. Ordinarily I would have fainted, but Eddie was very good, and I was already lying down. Eddie also told me that some people put vodka in their MoviPrep. At first I was ticked off that I hadn't thought of this, but then I pondered what would happen if you got yourself too tipsy to make it to the bathroom, so you were staggering around in full
Fire Hose Mode. You would have no choice but to burn your house.

When everything was ready, Eddie wheeled me into the procedure room, where Andy was waiting with a nurse and an anesthesiologist. I did not see the 17,000-foot tube, but I knew Andy had it hidden around there somewhere. I was seriously nervous at this point. Andy had me roll over on my left side, and the anesthesiologist began hooking
something up to the needle in my hand. There was music playing in the room, and I realized that the song was 'Dancing Queen' by ABBA I remarked to Andy that, of all the songs that could be playing during this particular procedure, 'Dancing Queen' has to be the least appropriate.

'You want me to turn it up?' said Andy, from somewhere behind me. 'Ha ha,' I said. And then it was time, the moment I had been dreading for more than a decade. If you are squeamish, prepare yourself, because I am going to tell you, in explicit detail, exactly what it was like.

I have no idea. Really. I slept through it. One moment, ABBA was yelling 'Dancing Queen, Feel the beat of the tambourine,' and the next moment, I was back in the other room, waking up in a very mellow mood. Andy was looking down at me and asking me how I felt. I felt excellent. I felt even more excellent when Andy told me that It was
all over, and that my colon had passed with flying colors. I have never been prouder of an internal organ.

ABOUT THE WRITER
Dave Barry is a Pulitzer Prize-winning humor columnist for the Miami
Herald

Note from Ginger:
Luckily my instructions call for Fleet's Phosphate soda. I can only hope that it tastes a little better, but I'm kinda doubting it. I'll be sharing the same wonderful liquid diet, but I'll stick to the Jello and Popsicles. What confuses me is I'm supposed to drink 3T at 6:00 PM and the remaining liquid at least four hours before my procedure. I'm scheduled to be there at 6:30 in the morning. So, do I get up at midnight and hope it works before I have to make the 30 minute drive to the surgery center? As I recall, there are no bathrooms between here and there. Great...now I have to worry about something else. They say to wear loose, comfortable clothing. Maybe they should have mentioned buying some Depends. :)

Decisions, Decisions

Jenny Craig or Nutri Systems...the choices are so difficult. If I choose Jenny I can look like Valerie Bertinelli, but I saw an add this morning for Nutri Systems with a former model. According to her, I can lose all this weight and finally wear that bikini I've never owned. I just wonder what's going to happen to all these stretch marks and cellulite? Oh well, she couldn't possible be paid to get my hopes up with a bunch of lies, could she?

Besides all the wondrous things that will happen besides the amazing weight loss and transformation, I'm going to develop a love for football that I've never had, and be able to catch one. Wow! What can I say? If the bikini doesn't get the attention I so need, according to 'anon' who posted a negative comment on my blog and thinks I cry for it, then being active in a man's sport certainly will.

I think Nutri System has won me over, hands down. I've always thought it tacky to wear three inch heels with a bathing suit, but once I have their model's body, long blonde hair, and none of this hanging skin that comes with aging, I might give those puppies a try.

Gotta run now...I have to go online and sign up to have those delicious looking meals delivered right to my door. Goodness, when I think of all the time I wasted...oh WAIT! I remember now. I did Nutri System, years ago. How could I have forgotten having to take out a second mortgage to pay for the food? Well, at least you don't have to visit and weigh in like I did back then. Oh, and Jenny Craig hired my sister off the street with no evidence of any type of training to be one of their weight-loss consultants. But, they must be doing well to afford all the air times for these great ads. I never joined Weight-Watchers though...I remember seeing their founder on a talk show years ago, sporting a huge diamond. When asked about it, she flippantly said something like, "Oh, this little thing? That's what the fatties of the world have done for me." I decided I didn't want to contribute to her her jewelry collection. :)

Thursday, June 26, 2008

Feel the Earthquake???

Nope, it's just me doing a happy dance about a new review:

Sparta Rose
Ginger Simpson
Historical romance
Available from Enspiren Press
June 2008 -Note: Pushed back to September 2008 due to Publisher's Health Issues :(

In 1860 Sparta, Tennessee, Roselle Fountain (Ellie) resented Tyler Bishop, her father’s ranch foreman. The Ranch, called Fountainhead, belonged to Ben Fountain. Ellie’s mother died of typhoid fever when she was three. She knew her father always wanted a boy and she could not stand the fact that Ty had won favor with her father. He seemed to dislike her wearing pants and boots. What difference it made was a mystery to Ellie. Then the trouble started—she was barely missed by a bullet that whizzed by her head. The panic Ben and Ty showed solidified her desire to take care of herself.

She went to Sparta, the nearest town, and purchased a gun, holster and bullets. Her practice area was a deserted mine. She was followed by a neighbor who was trying to force her father to sell his ranch to the Bryant family, she was sure he was the one behind the gun shot and the dead cattle. Jason Bryant, the mean twin, always seemed to show up and intimidate her. She was too stubborn to tell her father or Ty. She thought she could take care of herself.

Ms. Ginger Simpson is a new author to me. She has a marvelous way of telling the story and explaining the unusual plot. Her two main characters, Ty and Ellie, were attracted to each other and determined to keep their feelings private. The villain of the storyline was the number one twin, Jason. Joshua never talked, just followed his brother. This author touched on the fact that the twins had an unusual bond, but they were definitely different.

The supporting characters were very diverse. A couple of them were very involved in the story. The others were very minor, but important, cast members. Each worked together with the others to make this a great story. The only war going on was the range war between the Bryants and the Fountains.

It is a great book which I highly recommend to anyone who loves historical or western romances. I guarantee you will be glad you read it.

Overall rating: 5 Hearts
Sensuality rating: Very sensual

Reviewer: Brenda Talley
June 25, 2008

Monday, June 23, 2008

God's Disclaimers?


A few years back I penned a humorous book about life and aging. It's called, Life is a Bowl of Toilets and I Feel Flush. I'm still amazed by what happens to our bodies as we age, and wanted to share something that might bring you a chuckle despite the reality that aging is not for the faint of heart.

God’s Disclaimers

There are columns for everything these days, but none I’ve found answer questions about or warn you about growing old. Even food comes with nutrition information and expiration dates, and many products come with disclaimers. I’m thinking it would have been really nice if God provided stickers for various parts of our bodies with a line or two that prepares us for what’s to come. I don’t necessarily think they should be adhered to the specific body parts... that could get uncomfortable, but just a tidy little book or 3x5 card file we could use for reference. Here’s my take on what God’s disclaimers might look like:

HANDS: Be prepared! Without warning you will develop ugly brown splotches on the backs of your hands. They serve absolutely no purpose except to remind you that you are losing elasticity in your skin, getting wrinkles, and that even if you waste your hard-earned money on a face lift, one glimpse at these puppies will be a dead give away as to your real age. On the bright side, you may find them useful for a game of “connect the dots” if you find yourself needing something to do.

NECK: Around the age of fifty, you may notice slight to excessive changes in your neck. Folds of skin will manifest themselves, giving the appearance that you have one or more chins... or that you are doing an imitation of a Shar Pei puppy. You may wonder what happened to whatever was holding up the now-hanging skin, but I have yet to discover the answer to that-- I’m still researching it. Oh yes, and I do issue a strong warning that wearing turtle necks in the summer can cause heat prostration.

STOMACH MUSCLES: This warning is specific to child-bearing women who will later face removal of the reproductive organs. The abdominal muscles have a limited life span. Removal of any or all of the supporting organs such as the uterus, ovaries, or even the gall bladder etc, will cause weakening and sagging. Most likely, you have already experienced stretch marks from pregnancy, so don’t be alarmed if they tend to become more visible, thin and turn an angrier color of red. At this point, just consider your stomach as a shelf that has lost the hardware to hold it up. But, don’t fear, you won’t have time to worry about how it looks because you’ll develop a constant heat rash that will take most of your time and attention to clear. Women, please don’t feel that I’ve singled you out. I’ve given men the equivalent and call it “jock itch.”

BREASTS: Although women’s breasts are often the focus of attention from the male population, this is just a carry over from the real reason they were created–a viable food source; often men were weaned much too early. Regardless, during youth the epidermis of the female breast will remain taut to provide support for the milk supply as needed. Once past child-bearing age, the firmness will be lost to allow for the space created by the sagging abdomen you have most likely acquired. The breasts will tend to follow the downward trend to re-create the same distance between the tummy and boobs as before. You may have once worn a 38C, you will now require a 38 long!

UNDERARMS: Around fifty-ish, you might want to re-think wearing sleeveless attire. Unfortunately, during creation, a glitch in the plan causes that “neck thing” to also happen to your upper arms. (See above description). Useless wing-like appendages develop and hang loosely, so much so that they have been known to develop a sway that can offset your sense of balance. Although great playthings for grandchildren, and topics of discussion by younger women who are still clueless about the aging process, you must be aware of the danger posed by windy days and holding your arm too close to the open window of a moving vehicle. The residual movement could seriously harm you or someone in the near proximity.

GENERAL ALERTS: I’ve created a subtle reminder of how you may be viewed by others... a pain in the butt, and I call it a hemorrhoid. Certain things that can cause one or more to form in the rectal area can be, but are not limited to: Sitting, bending, stooping, lifting, sneezing, coughing, straining, and sometimes even breathing. Your guess is as good as mine about how to get rid of them, but sitz baths comes to mind. Which raises another question. What is a sitz bath? If you don’t sitz...isn’t it a shower?

And last but certainly not least, SEX DRIVE: Each female comes with different levels of sexual desire, and changes may occur that cause fluctuations in those levels. For example, a woman with little or no sex drive may find an increased appetite for stimulation while a woman with an unsatiable level may suddenly find herself totally disinterested and bored. Unfortunately, I’ve been unsuccessful in matching male to female urge/response ratio, and as the aging process takes place, it isn’t uncommon for the male to develop a sexual need totally opposite to that of his female counterpart. For the disinterested and bored woman, I recommend installing acoustical ceiling tiles in the bedroom so you have something to count, and for the highly charged woman I offer a sincere apology. I believe someone created an appropriate saying for this instance... “you can’t beat a dead horse.”

For more information, I’m usually available most days of the week, except on Sunday, when I rest.
Sincerely,

God

I just wanted to let you know that EMBEZZLED LOVE is now available through
Fictionwise. Here is the link:
http://www.fictionwise.com/ebooks/ebook69222.htm?cache

I'm still waiting to hold the actual book in these sweaty palms. *lol*
There's a very interesting article in Reader's Digest that I encourage everyone to read. It's 41 Secrets Your Doctor Would Never Share (Until Now). It's quite eye opening, and for those of you who won't have the opportunity to pick up a copy of July's issue, I'll happily quote a little bit here...of course giving full credit to READER'S DIGEST:

The following are quotes from actual doctors (I suppose):

"Hospitals want physicians to send patients home faster, so some doctors are given bonuses for getting their patients out of the hospital quickly."

Now that's a scary thought. I think that's been going on for a long time because I remember the difference in two of my own hospital experiences. The last time I had a child, I almost imagined there was a giant funnel slide in the delivery room where mother and new baby were expelled to the outside. I happened to have a c-section so my slide didn't occur until they were sure my stitches would hold up. :)
********************

""Nine-four percent of doctors take gifts from drug companies, even though research has shown that these gifts bias our clinical decision making."

"Doctors often make patients wait while they listen to sales pitches from drug reps."

I wondered about that. I visited the doctor last week and my appointment was delayed by forty-five minutes. A never-ending stream of business-suited men and women with black bags on rollers passed in and out the door while I sat there making myself believe the doctor was giving quality care to the patients and I shouldn't complain if I wanted equal time. This news kinda shatters that fairy-tale. I have a suggestion. How about passing the goodies on to the patients. It might make up for having to share coughs and sneezes longer than necessary in the waiting room. How many times have you gone to the doctor for something non-contagious and actually caught a cold or flu? I know I have. Would separate waiting rooms be nice?
*******************

"It's pretty common for doctors to talk about their patients and make judgments, particularly about their appearance."

THIS supports my post from yesterday. Remember, be aware of what doctors are writing in your chart. You have a right to see it and disagree with it. No one should make personal observations that will influence how other doctors treat your health concerns.
*******************

A good friend of mine, Kayelle Allen, has hospital experience to share, and recently posted some very helpful info on my yahoo group. She's given me permission to share it here:

1. You have the right to ask for an itemized bill. Every time a nurse gives you a pill (or anything) it's recorded. There are charges for every single thing they do. while you're sick, you may not remember getting pain reliever, but if you get the bill and you were there 3 days, and you have 44 charges for those pills -- chances are someone transposed a number or wrote something down wrong. 2 pills every 4 hours for 3 days would be 36 pills. You can request an audit, a change, or an explanation. You may be entitled to a refund. Other things might be duplicated too. Some insurance companies offer a bonus if you find errors on your itemized bill - a percentage of what you save them!

It's helpful to have "secondary insurance", which is a smaller, less expensive policy that covers coinsurance and co-pays. For example, your hospital bill might have a co-pay of several thousand dollars. Your secondary insurance may pay all but 10%, leaving you with a much more manageable amount to pay. If you have another insurance, like Aflac or AARP, they may pay that additional amount.

I recommended everyone in my family get some type of secondary insurance, as this can really help in times of physical distress when the last thing you want to think about is money and can you afford a possible life-saving test.

Not giving a recommendation of Aflac (the duck) but they have some policies that pay you - so you can use the money while you're in the hospital to help your family get by while you're not there.

The other to keep in mind is like buying a car, you can negotiate paying your bill. Say your expenses are $3000, and you could come up with $1200, but that's all. Call and ask for the business office and ask to speak to a collector for commercial insurance (non-medicare, non-medicaid). Tell them that you could pay this amount and ask if they will give you either a discount or a grant, to accept a "write off" of that amount. I've been amazed at how often our hospital has done this.

One more thing to ask when you're choosing a hospital (assuming you have time), ask if they balance bill the patient. And/or ask your primary insurance if their contract requires this. What it means is that if the insurance pays 80% of the contracted rate (very often the case), does the hospital bill the patient the other 20%. Some insurance contracts (in fact many) require that the hospital does not. That means the hospital will not charge you that extra 20% but will write it off.

I don't sell insurance, but I do bill it - and I can vouch for the fact that two patients who are in the hospital for the same type of treatment will end up (due to insurance coverage) owing anywhere from $360 to $3600. Talk to your insurance person and see what kinds of coverage you qualify for.

Remember to ask for an itemized bill after you leave (patients rarely have to pay anything for this). DO make certain you are precertified (insurance can refuse to pay all costs if this isn't done) - and even if the hospital says you are, call your insurance company and make sure. Ask for claim # and the person's first name and last initial. Write it down and keep it together. Make sure you have all insurance cards when you go to check in or do preop or precert work.

Last of all, once you get in the hospital, even if you feel bad, treat your nurses and doctors like angels. Their whole job is to get you well and on your way home. You want them to be sorry to see you go, but happy that you are better. *wink* A merry heart does as much good as medicine.
***********************

I'll follow up Kayelle's suggestions with the last quote from RD:

"Doctors get paid each time they visit their patients in the hospital, so if you're there for seven days rather than five, they can bill for seven visits. The hospital often gets paid only for the diagnosis code, whether you're in there for two days or ten."

So, my friends. Pay attention to your bills, your doctor and your medical rights. and...pay attention to the coat medical people wear in hospitals...I had no idea the length of the white coat is related to the length of training. Medical students wear the shortest coats of all. Beware of the person wearing only a collar! *lol*

Saturday, June 21, 2008

Your Rights as a Patient


People in the old west didn't have the medical choices we have today. They either survived their ailments or pinned their hopes on the men and women who traveled around in wagons and hawked their wares as life-saving tonics, potions and salves. Of course, most of what they offered were only homemade remedies later proven to have little, if any, medicinal purposes.

Today, we have choices, but we sometimes forget the people we deal with are ONLY human. They may have gone to school to learn a profession, but they still react to personalities. No matter how likable we perceive ourselves to be, we really never know how someone else views us. Your personality may very well determine the type of treatment you receive.

Do you know you have a right to view your chart? I urge everyone to take advantage of that opportunity--know what has been written about you in your medical records. My family knows very well how I can create cancer out of a cold sore. It's not pleasant to be that way, but it's my nature and I don't know how to change it. I'm not a hypochondriac...someone who imagines illnesses, rather I take a little symptom and let fear blow it into something major. I've gotten better as I've aged, but just to give you an example of how your idiosyncrasies can influence your medical treatment, I'm going to share this with you:

Years ago, I found a new doctor I really liked. I felt comfortable with him and thought I could share my true self with him. He was part of a 'group' so when he wasn't available, I saw other members of his team. After going there for several years, I got the distinct feeling that my maladies weren't being taken seriously. I kept getting prescriptions for Xanax and being sent home. Something was definitely not right.

One day, the doctor stepped out of the room and left my chart on the counter. Curiosity prompted me to open in, and written in big letters inside was a word, I can't remember at the moment, but it intimated to anyone reading my chart that my complaints could be easily discounted. I was enraged. I think I've forgotten the word because I was so offended by it. I went home and thought about it and listed the times I'd been to the doctor with legitimate complaints. I wasn't one to go for no reason at all. What had prompted Dr. S to be so insensitive?

It took a lot of guts, but I worked up the courage to approach my doctor and confess that I'd peeked into my file. I explained how disappointed I was in his assessment of me and how I felt it colored my treatment by his colleagues. Actually, I questioned his right to make his own personal feelings about me public knowledge in records that might determine my well-being.

He confessed he'd never thought of it from that perspective and immediately called his nurse to create a new folder for me. It wasn't long after that I changed to another medical group. You can erase words from folders but you can't erase formed perceptions. Whether I react from fear or reality, the symptoms feel the same and are just as overwhelming. It isn't fair of one doctor to make an assessment that can influence the opinion of others who only know me from a stack of papers.

I learned a valuable lesson from this experience. Now, I discuss my abnormal fear of death and illness with my doctor and I don't have to worry that he thinks I'm a nut case. I've found a great group here in TN, and as far as I can tell, they don't think I'm ready for the loony bin. I'm scheduled for a colonoscopy on July 3rd, and I'd be lying if I told you that the fear of colon cancer isn't lurking in the back of my mind. I've always been a mountain out mole-hills kinda gal when it comes to health issues, but it's definitely not by choice. If anyone has tips on how to stop worrying about things over which we have no control, I'm open to learn.

Just make sure there's nothing derogatory written in your records. It may save your life.

Who is Esther May Morrow?

If you fancy a time travel treat, here's a short story anthology with a most unique flavour...


Who is Esther May Morrow? Why is it that her strange shop, resembling something out of medieval England, has remained unchanged from the nineteenth to the twenty-third century. What is she selling? And who will come to buy...?

Stories in this collection feature a professional cardsharp with a dark secret; an old man, his dying dog, and a chance for immortality; a vengeful Marine and a special pocket watch; and a celebrated male prostitute and his unrequited love…for Olivia de Havilland!

Eerie, amusing and always original, these stories address the personal journeys of five haunted individuals, for whom quirks of time shed new light on their dilemmas. No one who enters Esther May’s shop is ever the same again.






Here’s a brief excerpt from Miss Olivia:

Reclining, deflating against his stack of pillows after a long day, he smiled as her familiar profile came to life. The backdrop only fidgeted, but Olivia herself, arguably at her most ravishing, began to walk toward him with breathtaking fluidity. She hoisted her dress slightly to prevent it snagging on the uneven ground. She watched her footing over stiff clumps of grass. Her smile bloomed into sweet dimples whenever she looked up. And as Olivia stood within inches of him—the close-up of all close-ups—he turned to walk with her. A beautiful, innocent piece of programming. Courtesy of Sexual Fantasies, Inc.

Rex tapped the pause button with Miss Olivia staring directly at him. What a remarkable technology, he thought, that inks in the pixels to approximate beauty. Her round, angelic face, flush cheeks, big eyes, butter-wouldn’t-melt smile with a hint of naughtiness behind the teeth. The visor had got her exactly right in every detail. Except one.

It wasn’t really Olivia.

And Rex was in love with the real Olivia.


Here’s a brief excerpt from Gin Rummy:

Horace Exeter didn’t like to lose.

From the moment he strolled into the Francis Drake, his waistcoat pocket bulging with wealth that was not his, he set about weighing up the competition. A blurry-eyed threesome emptying a pint apiece near the far window? Heck no, they were far gone, animated only by the cartoon gestures of a giddy colleague. They wouldn’t last two rounds—either beer or cards. A well-dressed couple lost between glances in a silent love charade? Hmm, slim pickings, he thought.

“Anything for you, sir?” asked the barkeep, ever so politely.

“Three gins. Make one a double, and you can point me to the third.”

The barkeep laughed. “Right you are, sir,” he said. “That’s the game just there—that table facin’ the far window. Gins…gin rummy...I’ll ’ave to remember that one.”

“Much obliged,” Horace replied curtly.

Contempt.

He’d always despised the quick-to-make-friends, particularly those with one hand in a till drawer. A smile cost nothing, so why should that suggest it was worth anything? He’d never understood why businessmen were so well-respected in a community. Their sole purpose was to relinquish others of wealth. Any benefit to the community was incidental. They were beneath contempt because they knew not of their crime. Larceny. Purveyors of platitudes, robbers with the law behind them.

At least I know I’m a son of a bitch, he thought, grinning. Time to ply a few platitudes of my own. Here’s to larceny!

With a flick of his chin, he downed the double gin.

Amber light from ship lanterns hanging in each alcove combined well with the varnished mahogany tables and plush maroon carpet to give an authentic period vibe. It was 1899, but to Horace, it felt more like 1599.

Whatever the century, they’re about to be fleeced.


And here’s a quick excerpt from Cretaceous:

“Come with me,” she said, untying her apron and nodding him toward the curtain door. Her small, slim figure and prematurely veined hands suggested to Vincent she’d spent a lifetime washing up, doing housework, being run off her feet.

Very chirpy, though. A lot like my Esther...just not in looks.

Rows of shelves greeted him as he ducked under the low doorframe into the shop. Dozens of wooden shelves, items upon them neatly arranged in a Sunday morning, bric-a-brac sort of way. Without his glasses, he couldn’t see the contents in much detail, but those he could discern—a Bedouin headscarf, a violin bow, a beige fedora hat, an old copy of the Bible, a futuristic-looking crystal clock—tickled his curiosity.

“What business are you in, Esther?” he asked, inhaling a gorgeous smell of fresh pastry from a shelf behind the counter labelled “something...something...Pies.”

“Buy or borrow. I’m in the time business,” she replied.

He leaned in, straining his old eyes for a closer look at the label.

Hmm...Fresh-Baked Pies.

“Buy or borrow? What’s that when it’s at home?” he queried. In seventy years of car boot sales, flea markets, and what have you, he thought he’d seen every kind of money-raising idea known to man. But “buy or borrow”?

Esther smiled and beckoned him over to another shelf set along the back wall, one full of coloured bottles. Vincent thought it resembled something from a Victorian pharmacy or perhaps even older than that, an apothecary’s stash.

“What’s this buy or borrow?” he asked again, softer this time as he stood beside her.

“It’s exactly as it sounds. You say whether you’d like to keep an item or rent it, and then make us an offer. It’s very rare we refuse.”

“Fair enough.” Vincent smiled, instantly dubious of the whole idea.

Esther’s snowy-white skin contrasted with the colours of viscous liquids across three jam-packed rows of glass bottles.

Unlabelled...like her, he thought, glancing approvingly at the woman who’d saved his life.


www.eternalpress.ca/esthermaymorrowborb.html
Thanks to the lovely Ginger for letting me share these stories. Till the next time, keep an eye out when you go shopping...you never know what Esther May Morrow's Buy or Borrow might be selling.
Arthur Everest

Cafe at the Edge of Outer Space



Wow, this week has flown by at warp speed! Robert Appleton here again. Sandwiched between my already released The Eleven-Hour Fall and its sequel The Elemental Crossing, is my science-fiction romance short story CAFÉ AT THE EDGE OF OUTER SPACE on July 7. If you dig either of those genres, you'll love this one…

In the distant future, our overpopulated planet requires all sixteen year olds to undertake a ten-year exile as a rite of passage. Paired with a mate on the voyage out to kick-start adulthood, they must all pass through the café on the edge of outer space, the legendary waystation orbiting Earth.

Frank Archer isn't ready for life away from home. He's smitten with his new girl, Emma Whitaker. But whether he likes it or not, it's time for the boy to become a man. He has a beautiful girl to protect...through the deadliest terrorist attack ever conceived!

Here are two short excerpts:

#1

Strangely, I find an air of nostalgia where there is no air. I’m looking out of a window that never needs cleaning from outside. It’s pretty much impenetrable, too. Just the faint threat of things over which we’ve no control – you know, asteroids, solar flares, terrorism, things like that. “Facing space,” they call it. Something to do with a rite of passage. Everyone leaves Earth at sixteen – that’s the law – and we’re not allowed to return until our twenty-sixth birthdays. Talk about a graduation.

There’s a kind of window over the Earth as well. It isn’t solid, it’s translucent – a hazy helmet of cloud and pollution. Great Britain passed by a few minutes ago. I could just about make out where I lived, more or less dead centre on the island. Apparently, Britain used to be much bigger. And warmer. More sandy beaches, less pack ice. I can’t quite picture Blackpool without snow, though. Outdoor roller-coasters? They must’ve been insane.

It’s been days since I saw anyone familiar. All my classmates are still hundreds of miles below, probably wondering what the café at the edge of outer space is really like. I wish I could tell them. I’m the oldest, but their turns will come soon enough. It’s actually not too different from the school diner: everyone’s in each other’s way, no one wants to stay here long, and the food is bloody awful.

So, I’m out on my own. I left Earth a boy, and they’re counting on me to find Frank Archer the man. There’s something disconcerting about that whole idea. I don’t want to change. Why should I? Where will travelling the universe take me, except away from here? What if I never find another place as peaceful as Lancashire. What if I change for the worse? We’re the future of Earth; without proper guidance, who’s to say we won’t become a planet of cutthroats? So much for their claims of overpopulation – by the time you’re old enough to understand the notion, they’ve already shipped you off into orbit. It’s a bizarre way of treating children, if you ask me.


#2

Our gentle footsteps seem invasive, illegal somehow. The dark tunnel effect is dizzyingly effective as we tiptoe out onto a three-hundred-and-sixty degree stellar walkway. I hold my breath. If Emma’s hand wasn’t squeezing mine, I’d be head over heels off balance instead of head over heels in . . . liking her a lot.

Hotshot.

It’s a deep-bone thrombosis of stars and gravitational attraction. Body to body, orbit to orbit, me to her. We’re cosmic trespassers, and I feel just as transparent as the see-through window encasing us. She looks right into me, her warm breath reaching my cheek where it lingers. Utter silence. My heavy breathing now feels part of oblivion, hers a solar wind from light years away. We’re together now, though. So together. She roves her flat palm from my side across the front of my t-shirt, exciting a halo that dissolves down through my entire body. As I take that hand, I’m a wisp at her mercy. Her fingers pulse magic as we draw near, and her breasts press against my rib cage. Near. No fear. We’re…


Coming July 7 at www.eternalpress.ca

Friday, June 20, 2008

Oldie, but still a goodie!

I received an amazing surprise today. One of my older books with Champagne Books, was reviewed by Enchanting Reviews. I was thrilled to see my story is still getting 5-STAR ratings!! WOO-HOO




5-Enchantments!!! This is an intriguing story of betrayal and love, with a beautiful happy ever after ending. This is a fabulous story; I loved it! I thought Ms. Campbell combined mystery, history, and intrigue beautifully to create a tale that was well worth the read. Her characters came together nicely, even though each had such a strong personality. If you like Romance, this is a must read. Excellent job, Ms. Campbell.


Here is a yummy excerpt, too...

“I should.” Judith scowled. “No, perhaps I shouldn’t.”

She glanced at the bedroom door of the inn, willing it to open just as the floor would push her across the hall to Andrew’s room. But no matter how long she stalled, the ground was not going to move her.

Wiping her moist palms against her robe, she growled and walked to the window. She parted the dingy curtain enough to look down onto the street. Darkness covered the land, and the half-moon didn’t light the road very well. A few carriages parked out front, their drivers waiting atop for the occupants.

Although not the best inn in town, it would do. Then again, nothing so far on this trip had satisfied her. Andrew’s company gnawed on her already frayed nerves. Not that he’d been mean or degrading. On the contrary. Most of the time they conversed on a solid level--almost as if she had been talking to a true gentlemen of the realm.

That could be the problem. He wasn’t a nobleman, but a stable hand. She’d really hit rock bottom this time and ignored everything she’d ever been taught. Traipsing around the countryside with a man without a proper escort, pretending he was her husband was not only scandalous, it was a criminal act since they had a forged marriage certificate.

Nobody could know about her deceitful ways, and she’d move Heaven and Earth to make certain that happened. But what worried her more was the man portraying her husband. What he’d told her about his past disturbed her a great deal. Would he try and steal from her? Although he may not pick her pockets, there were other ways of stealing money.

Blackmail, for one.

She glanced at the door again. No matter what, she needed to talk to Andrew. Grasping the sides of her robe, she cursed. Did she dare go to his room and talk to him wearing her nightclothes?

But she couldn’t put it off another moment if she expected to get any sleep tonight. This must be done.

With her heart thumping in a wild rhythm against her ribs, she opened the door and took the few steps across the hall to Andrew’s room. Breathing deeply for courage, she rapped softly.

Hurried footsteps from behind the door padded across the floor, then the knob turned. Within seconds, Andrew’s body came into view. Oh good Lord! He had a bed sheet wrapped around his waist and his chest was bare...and he was probably naked underneath the sheet, also.

He scanned her attire, his eyes widening. “Lady Judith? Why are you about this time of night?”

Her breathing turned irregular. Why didn’t he excuse himself to get dressed? But of course she stood before him in her nightclothes and robe, so she didn’t have room to criticize.

Andrew glanced up the hall. “Is something amiss?”

She couldn’t breathe. Yet she was breathing much too fast as it was. Must be the tightness in her chest making her feel this way. “I...I...” She swallowed to moisten her dry throat. “I must speak with you.”

Voices floated from down the hall, and she swung her head in that direction. I’m going to get caught in my nightclothes. Without another thought, she pushed past Andrew and closed the door behind her.

His forehead creased. “Where is Pearl?”

“The same place I should be--asleep in bed,” she grumbled.

He scanned over her body again, his face relaxing as a grin touched his chiseled features. Underneath her gown, her nipples rose from his heated gaze, so she crossed her arms over her chest to hide them.

“Are you all right?” he asked.

“No, I’m not. I’m very nervous about tomorrow.”

He nodded. “Worried about when we see your father, eh? What would you like me to do about it?”

“Promise me something.” She stepped closer to him and placed her hand lightly on his bare arm, trying not to enjoy the warmth seeping into her skin...and especially the tingling in her body. “Promise me you will not tell my family about our arrangement.”

He glanced at her hand. When his gaze lifted, they appeared darker than before. A lazy smile touched his mouth. A knot formed in her throat, and her heartbeat quickened.

“Why would I tell,” he asked in a low voice.

“Well, for one, I know you do not like me very much and I hope you will not try to punish me because of your feelings for me. And of course, if you are trying to get more money somehow...”

His brows drew together and he blinked several times. “What are you talking about?”

“Didn’t you tell me you used to take money from wealthy people and always wanted more?”

His face relaxed and he chuckled. “Your father will pay more?”

“Andrew, please.” She stepped closer and placed both hands on his chest. “Please do not do this to me.”

She held her breath, hoping he would stick to their arrangement and not try to blackmail her. So far, his expression didn’t look vindictive at all. The laugh lines in his face had disappeared, and he became serious as his gaze moved over her face.

He took hold of her hands, but still held them near his heart. “I promise not to tell your family, Judith.”

“Indeed? Do you give your solemn oath...on your parents’ grave?”

“I don’t know where they are buried, but yes. I swear to you upon their graves.”

Relief flooded through her and she released a heavy sigh. She dropped her stare from his eyes and focused on his chest...a torso sprinkled lightly with hairs, narrowing to a line before dipping underneath the sheet.

Oh, my! What had she been doing? Touching him while he was indisposed like this? According to the soft expression on his face, he appeared as if he didn’t mind the improper way she had laid her hands on his bare skin.

“Judith? Is that the reason you have been so unreasonable and on edge today?”

Slowly, she retraced the path her gaze had traveled over his powerfully, muscular chest, up his sculptured face to meet his eyes. She heard his words, but didn’t quite understand them. “What?”

His lips twitched, but he didn’t laugh. “Have you been worried I would back out on our bargain?”

She nodded, his dark eyes hypnotizing her. The room felt suddenly smaller as she stood closer to him than before. The heat from his body touched her skin and melted her insides.

She nodded. “That was the reason. I thought my father’s money might tempt you to confess our deal.”

“Don’t worry any longer, my dove. You are paying me more than I deserve or ever expected. I promised you something, and I never break my promises.”

Why was he saying the words she wanted to hear? Even the tone of his voice seduced her, giving her the urge to cuddle next to him and stay there for the rest of her life.

One of his hands released hers, but she kept it to his chest. He caressed her cheek, then his hand slid down the column of her neck and he took a lock of her hair that rested near her breast.

Again, her throat turned dry. Her heart thundered in a fierce rhythm, and her body boiled with desire. What was he doing to her?

“The only way your father could tempt me is if he were a woman. More beautiful, in fact, than the one standing before me now.” His gaze lowered to her mouth.

He did it again. Did he know how excited he made her? If he kept this up, she’d be under his control. Right now, that was not a good idea...especially in her state of undress.

She licked her dry lips, noticing his gaze darkened when she did this.

“You know,” he said as he moved closer until their legs touched, “you should not look at a man like that. He might get the impression you want to be kissed good and hard.”

She hitched a breath, her heart pounding too hard for her to breathe normally. “I’m...” She swallowed. “Forgive me?”

He slipped his other hand around her waist and pulled her body fully against his. Another gasp escaped her, sounding too much like a moan from the pleasure spiraling through her. Both hands were on his chest again, the quick rhythm of his heartbeat knocking against her palms.

“There is nothing to forgive,” he whispered.

His warm breath fanned her face, and she couldn’t keep her eyes off his lips, even through her half-closed lids.

“Judith? I think we should practice looking married so your family doesn’t get suspicious.” His mouth descended toward hers. “Would you like that? Should we practice acting married?”


To buy paperback -

To buy Ebook


~Phyllis~

EXCERPT FROM NO HOLDS BARRED BY JAYDYN CHELCEE



Hi Readers,
My final excerpt and posting on Miz Ging's site, so I thought I'd share an excerpt from No Holds Barred, Book Two of the Montana Men Series and follows In the Arms of Danger. NHB is scheduled for release in Dec. from Eternal Press. Don't forget to visit their website at http://www.eternalpress.ca or my website at www.tabithashay.com
Enjoy....Tabs



EXCERPT FROM NO HOLDS BARRED: ADULT CONTENT


Kaycee forgot to be cautious, ignored the warning bells ringing in her head. There was only action and reaction and both were hot as the fires of Hades. Whoever thought passion wasn’t damning clearly had never looked into the piercing eyes of this man, never been kissed by this cowboy, or felt the uncontrolled heat slashing into the both of them.
Her knees trembled.
Kaycee curled her fingers into the soft hair at his nape and cuddled closer.
Jace released her, took a moment to tug off his boots, and then he pulled her closer. “I want you,” he said quietly. “I need you.”
He unfastened the narrow ties at the back of her neck and released them. She caught the dress to her waist,gasped and started to conceal herself from his gaze.
He closed his fingers around her arms, feathered his thumbs across the skin of her wrists and shook his head. “No. I want to see you.” He released her and stood back, his hot gaze skimming and admiring the fullness of her bared breasts. “I knew it,” he mumbled huskily. “I knew you weren’t wearing a bra.”
Her nipples stood at attention like tiny soldiers. A delicate rose tinted them, and they silently begged for notice. Jace stifled a moan and lifted her in his arms. He crossed the expanse of the living room to the master bedroom.
“Kiss me,” she demanded and pressed tiny, fairy-light kisses against his throat.
“Ah, sweetheart’,” he breathed. “You have no idea what a delicious temptation you are. I want to do so much more than kiss you, darlin’.”
She looped her arms trustingly around his neck. Her lips nuzzled his throat. “You have no idea what a temptation you are,” she replied.
For a moment, Jace felt startled, and then he grinned. “You’re something, aren’t you, sweetheart?”
Surprise filled her eyes as she touched her tongue to his throat. “You taste like—wonderful.”
Jace trembled. Passion coiled deep inside his belly. His stomach muscles clenched into knots as she whispered dreamily, “I want to taste all of you.”
He stumbled. His gaze dipped to hers. Did she have any idea what she’d just implied? Just how a man should take a statement like that?
She drew the black Stetson off his head and dropped it onto the floor. “Your pupils are so dark and constricted, they’re nearly invisible.”
His chest rose and shuddered with each ragged breath he drew. Oh, damn. He might as well be standing on the rim of a precipice, speculating as to which direction he should go to keep from toppling over the edge. She made him hungry.
She shivered. And he knew he must look a little bit feral.
Jace stared down at her wondering if she had a clue as to what she did to him. He was so damned hard, he hurt. He continued down the hall toward the bedroom. He wanted to taste her too, every secret, forbidden crevice. He wanted to explore the tiny buds of her nipples, the satiny folds that hid her femininity. He wanted her flavor on his tongue.
Christ, he wanted to be inside her, so damn deep inside her, that when he came, his seed burst into the very heart of her womb. He’d never wanted so badly in his life, never ached—quite this way.
His heart bumped painfully in a steady rhythm. Ragged little bursts of air escaped his mouth. He couldn’t draw a full breath. Heat pulsed through him, feeding the fire, building it into roaring flames.
She nuzzled his throat again and he nearly lost his grip on reality. Her scent coiled around his heart. His chest felt heavy, as if he were being smothered. The urgency of his need overwhelmed him. Overwhelmed him—
“Make love to me,” she whispered. “I need you. Tonight, I need to be held. I need you to hold me. Love me.”
Jace paused at the side of the bed and smothered a groan. He looked down at her knowing he’d have to refuse. Damn, he was going to have to do the right thing. His body rebelled at the thought of not making her his.“I want to make love to you, lovely lady. I do. I want to be inside you,” he breathed hoarsely. “Sweet Christ, I want to be inside you. And if I believed for one moment you wanted that too, I’d have you stripped and flat on your back in a second. In less time than that, I’d be buried so damn deep inside you, our souls would touch.”
Her gaze fastened on him, watched a trickle of sweat spill a lazy path to his brow. It slid past his temple. She licked her lips, all her attention focused on that droplet of moisture making its way to this throat. He held his breath and ached for her to catch it with the tip of her tongue.
Jace growled at the sight of her little pink tongue as it darted out to moisten her lips. He wanted to feel the dampness of it lick over his body. He imagined her lapping at him like a kitten at a bowl of sweet cream. “Yeah, I want to be inside you, darlin’. You wouldn’t know where you began and I ended,” he said roughly. “But damn it, damn it, you’re not sober enough to realize what you’re saying, let alone doing. I don't want regrets in the morning, sweetheart, for either of us.”

Win a Sony eReader

The Wild Rose Press is giving away a free Sony Reader. To enter all you need to do is buy any TWRP story by one of the participating authors between now and August 31, 2008. Participating authors are:

Roni Adams
Jules Bennett
Donna Bolk
Laurel Bradley
Rachel Brimble
Pam Champagne
Christine Columbus
Sandra Cormier
Amy Corwin
SharonCullen
Donna Dalton
K.M. Daughters
Debbie Doggett
CarolAnn Erhardt
Valerie Everhart
Cindy Green
Kathleen Grieve
Larry Hammersley
Stacy Dawn
Sharon Horton
Tara Haff
Anna Kathryn Lanier
Kat Mancos
Marly Mathews
Nicole McCaffrey
Devin McKee
Sandy Wichersham McWhorter
Donna Michaels
Stacey Joy Netzel
AnneMarie Novark
Cindy Pape
PL Parker
Katie Reus
Jane Richardson
Deborah Rittle
Jennifer Robins
Donna Marie Rogers
Emma Sanders
Robin Shope
Misty Simon
Carol Spradling
Lily Stone
Browyn Storm
Beth Trissel
Leanne Tyler
Brenda Weaver
Nita Wick
Teri Wilson

I've been trying to put a link to the site here, but it's not showing up on the blog...don't ask me why. So, for more information, you just need to to The Wild Rose Press website. And to get there, it's www. thewildrosepress. com, without the spaces.

GOOD LUCK

~ Anna Kathryn

My Appreciation


I want to thank all the wonderful authors who have graced my blog this week. There have been some awesome posts that allowed the readers a real glimpse into the writer behind the work, and some very titillating excerpts. This was far beyond what I imagined and I thank each of you for taking time to participate. Tomorrow is the last day of the week-long fest, so have at it!

By the way, the blogfest generated 743 views thus far and brought over 200 first time visitors to my site. I'm so impressed and hope we can do this again soon.

On Sunday, I'll be back with my regular posts, the first of which is going to be about doctors and hospitals. I just got back from scheduling a Colonoscopy for July 3rd. My life is so exciting, I'm sure you can't wait for the details. :)

Ginger

EXCERPT FROM WITCH'S HEART, BOOK TWO, BY TABITHA SHAY



EXCERPT FROM WITCH'S HEART: WARNING: ADULT CONTENT


Sage started toward her. Hannah swallowed her giggles and backed up a step. The waken looked dark and vengeful with mock fury on his face. Still, it was worth it.
He set down the soft drink can and reached for the glass of ice. Laughing, she tried to dart around him, but he closed in on her until he hemmed her in a corner.
“Now, don’t do anything foolish that could cause you to lose your towel.”
He arched a brow. “Don’t worry about my towel, mau-ley. If I lose it, it will be on purpose.”
He lifted her shirt and dragged the ice cube across her bare midriff.
“Don’t! You’ll make me wet my pants.”
“I already made you wet your pants, baby.”
“I wasn’t talking about that kind of wet.” She slapped at his busy hand and laughed. “Stop! I surrender. You must take some kind of perverted thrill in torturing me.”
“I do.” He raised her shirt higher, stared at the flesh-colored bra cupping her breasts. “I like this thing you’re wearing. I can see your nipples.”
He dragged the ice cube across her bra, wetting the tight buds through the soft material.
She wiggled and gave a yelp. “Enough! I give!”
“Not enough wench! Say you’re sorry and then I might stop this torture.”
“I’m sorry. Now let me out of this corner.”
“I lied.” He laughed and reached for a second piece of ice.
“Me, too. I’m not sorry at all.”
“No?” he said playfully. “Hmm, maybe I can think of another way to torture you.”
Slowly, he lowered his head, giving her time to draw back if she wanted. She wasn’t a fool. Sage was hot. Why should she miss a kiss from a studly man? No reason came to mind. Then his mouth was on hers, his tongue probing, parting her lips and gliding inside. He tasted like smooth, whipped chocolate and hot steamy sex. His exploration of her mouth was thorough, a bit rough, and a lot hungry.
Jesus, he knew how to kiss.
Hannah moaned and arched against him. Tangling her fingers in his hair, she held him against her as he rocked his hips in a familiar rhythm.
Slowly, he raised his head, his eyes shimmering and hot. His chest heaved with a ragged breath. He moaned. “Don’t move, mau-ley. I . . . just don’t move anymore.” He rested his forehead against hers and breathed deeply. “Give me a minute. Fook!” He quivered against her, his body trembling. “There’s just no foreplay that’s going to work for us, Hannah,” he whispered.

Devon Falls: Fiery Magic ADULT Excerpt!


*warning this has Adult Language*
Devon Falls: Fiery Magic
Raine Delight
*Book 3 in Devon Falls Series*
Coming 7/4/08 from Aspen Mountain Press
Genre: Paranormal Romance

Damien Dracon is back in Devon Falls, and he is about to woo the one lady he left three years ago. Family secrets and youthful pride forced him to give up the one good thing in his life: the love of Alicia Stevens. What he doesn't expect is that Alicia has a secret of her own, and it may just tear them apart. Can two former lovers find it in themselves to forgive one another and let love grow between them? Or will past secrets haunt them and tear them apart?

Adult Excerpt:

Driving on Route 98 toward Devon Falls , Damien Dracon looked at the familiar landmarks as he got closer to Devon Falls . With his inky black hair waving in the wind that blew around his shoulders, his jungle green eyes narrowed in anticipation at being with his family and friends again, and finally making things right with the only woman who made him feel complete and loved him unconditionally. Sighing, he slowly throttled down his electric blue corvette as he saw the town limits come into view. He whistled softly at the growth along Main Street as he spied several new businesses that looked prosperous and seemed to thrive in such a small town. Seeing the Dew Drop Café, he arched an eyebrow at the bright flowers along the windows and the steady stream of people coming in and out of the place. Musing, Damien wondered who owned such a lively place and made a mental note to find out from his brother, Rodrick.
After driving by, he spied the Dragon Inn ahead, a flag ship of sorts in the town. Feeling his breath hitch after being away for three long years, Damien still marveled at the magnificence of it. It stood three stories tall, majestic in appearance and painted a blue that seemed to change colors if you looked at it just a certain way. What no one knew was that the Dracon Family were the original owners and were shape shifters, who guarded that secret with a fever that would have given Fort Knox a run for its money. Each member was something different, and they didn't grow into their powers until they hit twenty years of age. Damien sighed at the way his grandfather ran the family before his death two years before. His grandfather believed that the family was supposed to be quiet, not make waves, and follow any order the patriarch gave, regardless of who got hurt by it though it was unavoidable that someone got hurt no matter what.
Damien tried to relax as he finished driving up the long and winding driveway, which seemed to go on forever. He saw the family home and business was quiet for a change. Normally it was a bustling place, and according to his twin brother, Rodrick, the town was growing in leaps and bounds that caused him to wonder if they should grow with it or fade away. It was something to ponder now that his grandfather was not around to cause trouble or make his displeasure known if family members did something to make him notice them, Damien thought as he pulled near the house.
Damien stopped the Corvette next to his brother's Harley, a bike that exemplified his free spirit and rough edges as well as the power that lurked under his skin. Shaking his head, smiling at the way the bike seemed to exude power as he got out of the car, Damien wondered what awaited him in Devon Falls, and as always, his thoughts strayed to the one woman who he was determined to be with, so he could show her the sweetness of love again.
************ ****
His long legs strode across the sidewalk. As he spied the window of the Dew Drop softly glowing, a shadow walked around the place. Curious as to who ran the place, he jogged lightly to see and almost fell through the glass pane at the sight of Alicia, weaving her way around the cases. He watched the way she moved, all fluid like and with a grace that he could never find, no matter how hard he tried, in other women; her reddish blonde hair was in a loose ponytail that he itched to take down. His eyes widened when her lush, voluptuous body came into view; it was the most desirable body he had ever seen, and he felt all the blood rush to his cock straining the front of his jeans. Whistling softly, he never thought she would grow up to be so voluptuous and sexy! It was quite an eye opener to say the least, especially when she bent over to clean the case of pastries and her jeans tightened around her rounded ass. Groaning at the vision in front of him and feeling his blood begin to burn with suppressed desire; Damien tried to still his racing blood. My god, she is gorgeous and sexy. Why has no one caught her attention after I left? She is like one of those 1950's screen bombshells, all rounded curves and long legs. What man wouldn't be lucky to have her as a mate and mother of his children?
Watching her dance to a tune only she could hear brought Damien's attention to her ass and legs. She moved like a ballerina, yet it was more graceful to his thinking, and as he watched her dance around the cases and tables, he found himself longing to go in and dance with her. Thinking how her body would curve around his made him shudder with a hot need that had him rock hard and aching for something that he hoped he didn't lose after all this time.
Raine Delight


Raine Delight's Hot Summer Contest going on now!

Starting June 11th and ending July 24th
Only One Entry per contest please!

On July 4, 2008 Raine Delight will dazzle us with a new addition to Devon Falls! Devon Falls: Fiery Magic will captivate you till the last page.

In honor of this release Raine Delight and Phoenix Rising Promotions will be holding a scavenger hunt for a wonderful Sapphire Dragon statue. Visit Phoenix Rising Promotions at www.phoenixrisingpr omotions. com and roam through the list of authors websites. Locate the picture of the dragon and find the lines to the riddle there after. Locate the entire riddle, the URL's they were found at and then solve the riddle for your entry into the drawing for the gorgeous Dragon Statue.

The second contest being held for this release is a recipe contest for a wonderful culinary basket, filled with a cupcake cookbook, cookie cutters, Mexican Chocolate, and a variety of teas. Send your favorite recipe to Phoenix Forrester at prp_phoenix@ yahoo.com or Raine Delight at rainedelight@ gmail.com for your entry into the drawing for the culinary basket. The winning recipe will be featured in the August newsletter for Phoenix Rising Promotions and Raine Delight.

Happy Reading and searching!

Thursday, June 19, 2008

EXCERPT FROM WITCH'S BREW BY TABITHA SHAY



Good Evening Readers,
Once again, I'm back at Miz Ginger's Blog Site. I thought I'd post the blurb and a small excerpt from Witch's Brew, Book One in the Winslow Witches of Salem Series....Happy Reading.

BLURB FROM WITCH’S BREW
PARANORMAL WITCH ROMANCE
Witches, wizards and magic! Saylym Winslow regains forgotten magical powers, but is determined to ignore them. No way is she a witch; magic brings nothing but trouble. But when Talon, Waken Prince and assassin of witches is assigned to terminate Saylym by stealing her soul, she discovers being a real, spell-casting witch is only the beginning of her problems.
Talon is enchanted by Saylym’s beauty and charm and refuses to do his duty. He is given a choice by the powerful Waken Guild: Handfast with the trouble making witch to keep her in line or they will send Drayke, the most ruthless waken assassin, to hunt her down.
Sparks fly in this bewitching, sexy battle of the sexes—witch-style.

EXCERPT FROM WITCH'S BREW: WARNING: ADULT CONTENT

Saylym flipped on the store lights and paused at the big display window, where she fiddled with the potted plants she’d arranged there the day before.
She stilled and shivered. She felt eyes burn into her. Hungry eyes. How strange. Pin pricks of awareness heightened her senses and her body tensed. Her gaze flickered to a man propped lazily against a lamppost across the street. Huh. How had she missed him?
How could a man look mysterious, sinister and sexy as hell all at the same time?
Somehow, he managed to do all three at once.
Maybe it was the head to toe black he wore that made him seem powerful as well. Black leather pants hugged muscular thighs. His silk shirt stretched taut across a wide chest, a chest made for a woman’s head to rest upon. Her pulse pounded hotly in response. What else had she expected? This was the first hot male she’d seen in over a month.
Her curiosity caught, she couldn’t help wondering why he was watching her. Even from across the street, she felt his eyes caressing every inch of her body and felt his hunger. Her skin tingled. Heat crawled over her body, spreading to her loins. Her stomach clenched and jittered with unexpected need.
Her need, or his? She wasn’t certain.
She only knew her body melted in response as images of the two of them tangled together on black satin sheets floated in her head. His naked body covered hers. She gasped, digging her nails in the flesh of his back as he nudged her thighs apart and teased her with the broad head of his thick phallus.
Strong hands slid across her stomach in a slow, tantalizing caress. Long fingers plucked at her tight nipples before he lowered his mouth to suckle.
Saylym blinked, dissipating the vision in her head. Holy shit! Her hands trembled as she brushed back a strand of hair. Her breasts ached and felt swollen. Her nipples throbbed with urgent need. She touched her trembling fingers to where she’d felt his mouth on her.
Somehow, their bodies and minds had connected. They’d shared those fiercely erotic images. Low in her belly, heat sizzled into a blazing fire, leaving behind a ravaging need.
He wanted to claim her. She read it in his mind.

Why am I not writing?

I am a writer. I write. I love to have written. But there are times when I am not doing what I need to be doing, and seriously, I wonder why.

What tells you if your daily writing time is helping or hindering your current piece? Answer these questions and find out!

1. You have a mid-session mind dump. For some reason, the words stop coming, and you need help. Do you:

a. Go to a Thesaurus?
b. Grab a bite to eat and take a break?
c. Close the WIP and give up for the day?


2. You quit writing…
a. to do research?
b. to go play with your dog?
c. to finish laundry?

3. You’ve planned a nice long writing session before you go to work for a 30- minute stretch. Your efforts are:
a. Very successful—you got in 30 mins
b. Slightly successful you got in 15 mins
c. Unsuccessful- no writing time.

4. How much does your writing area affect you?
a. Very – you must have your place
b. A little, you need quiet
c. Barely – you can write anywhere.

5. How much reading do you do?
a. Maybe not as much as you should, but you do read some.
b. As much as possible
c. Barely any.

SCORE:

As few C’s as possible means the better you focus on your writing. You don’t quit when the writing becomes tough. You either keep your mind in the process, or get some exercise to release tension so you can work.

Notes: Everyone can lose focus, and when it happens it is far better to get up and move around, or take a break, but not necessarily quit the effort altogether. Most successful writers find that if they will stay in their chair and make a concentrated effort to get in at least 15-30 minutes of writing time, they will finish a book. Some people can write anywhere but usually distractions make the writing more effort than when they are in a quiet area that has been carefully prepared for them to write in. And many say that reading keeps their mind sharp and gives them new ideas about plotting and setting that keep them working on their own work.

More SEX?? What???

It's a thrill to see my books go from ebook format to print format, because then I know I'll get a different group of readers to read my books. My daughters have been my supporters lately, but their tastes are very different. My older daughter (22 yrs old) likes my contemporaries. My younger daughter (19 yrs old) likes my historicals. So, when my newest contemporary (romantic suspense) came out in print, and both of my daughters wanted to read it, I was pleasantly surprised! I asked my youngest daughter why she wanted my book since it wasn't a historical. She said it was because of the HOT cover. heehee



So to get on with my story... My youngest daughter is getting through the story quicker than my older daughter. Today I talked with my younger daughter who had just finished reading the sex scene. Do you know what she told me? She said it wasn't long enough!! (the sex scene wasn't long enough - get your mind outta the gutter!)

I about died. What did she want? A whole chapter of them making love? Sheesh!

So here is my question. How long do you think love scenes should last? Hmmmmm???

Oh, and if you'd like to check out my story and purchase it , go to my website - www.phyllismariecampbell.com

~~Phyllis~~

Privy to Murder receives 4 Enchantments


I'v enjoyed being on Ginger's Blog so much and felt I could get away with telling you about my new review for Privy to Murder from Enchanting Reviews.

Rating: 4 Enchantments

Having recently gone through a bitter divorce, Tali Cates has moved back to her hometown of Love, Texas with her young son and angst-ridden teenage daughter. Moving in with her quirky mother, Mumsie, who speaks with the spirits and takes tarot cards seriously, Tali has her hands full with her new party planning business, Party On. After her first gig ends with the hostess’ murder, Tali has to deal with the murdered woman’s ghost, a suspicious town and an ex-boyfriend, J.T., who may or may not be the next love in her life. Not feeling comfortable with the gift her Mumsie takes for granted, Tali stumbles from one crisis to the next as she struggles to build her business and solve not one but two murders. Unwilling to acknowledge her spirit-seeing gift, Tali must learn to come to terms with it if she’s to solve the murders and save her family.

Tali is a likeable, spunky, no-nonsense character and it’s easy to sympathize with her family and business issues. I liked this book and would enjoy reading the next due out in 2008 titled Bloody Murder. I would love to see Tali and J.T. get together as well as more fleshing out of Mumsie—she has some wonderful personality quirks.

This is not a story focusing on romance, rather a cozy mystery with a touch of the paranormal. Those who like the cozy mystery genre will enjoy this one. The plot is well-done, the characters believable and the reader is kept wondering what happens next. The paranormal twist is not over-done and adds an extra element of interest to the story.

Carol Shenold is an author and teacher. Currently she is at work on her sequel to PRIVY TO MURDER; Bloody Murder due out in 2008. PRIVY TO MURDER placed in the “Frontiers in Writing” contest in 2007. Also available from Eternal Press is Carol’s second novel, Fairy Dust. Learn more about Carol Shenold at http://www.carolshenold.com/.

So I hope you are all interested and rush out to read it.

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