Welcome 2016!

Here it comes...2016!

I can't even imagine how the change of the year got here so quickly. It's been an amazing, odd, interesting, slightly terrible, and very wonderful year, and I'm incredibly grateful that I've gotten to experience it. If you're reading this, I'm glad you've gotten to experience it with me. :)

Every year, someone asks me about making New Year's resolutions, and my response is always that I don't unless it just sort of turns out that way. If I feel a need to make a change in my life to be a better person or to be healthier or happier, I don't until the new year, which is what I think many people do. For some, it will work. The idea that we're sweeping out the old and ringing in the new helps some people stick with their goals. For others, not so much. Me? I just have to do it or it won't get done.

I'm reminded of this every year when I go to the gym where I work out regularly. Right after Christmas, I see the staff showing a bunch of new or potential members around. Some of them have gotten memberships as Christmas presents; the others probably have made the resolution to get fit in the coming year. Either is great if it gets that person to the gym. Unfortunately, I've seen this scenario played out over the years, and usually most of the folks who start simply don't finish. Every December, I see the new members signing up. In January and maybe February, the gym is bustling with well-intentioned people of all ages trying to make a positive impact on their health. By the end of March, only a couple of the people who started in January are still hanging in there. These are people who have made a lifestyle change and committed to it, which is key to making any change in life. I think if we called them New Year's lifestyle changes instead of resolutions, more people would be successful in reaching their goals.

What's helped me is that if I want to change something, I try to make it a habit as soon as possible. For example, in September I realized that job stress was getting me down and affecting my relationships with other people. I decided one day to change my attitude toward what was going on in my work life that day, and made plans to talk less about my frustrations at work and more about other things going on in my life. That required me to stop focusing on my job as much and focus on things I've missed, like reading and writing. Making that one adjustment required a great deal of effort and other modifications, but it's been worth it. Life is better now, even though the workplace situation hasn't really improved and probably never will.

What I'm trying to say is that there is no time like the present, whether it is New Year's day or a random day in March, to make the changes you want to make, and sometimes those changes require more than one variation in routine to make them happen. If you want to get healthy at the gym, you have to make it a part of your routine, not just something you do when you get time, or that gym membership will get very dusty and then disappear altogether. At least, that's how it works for me.

I hope that you achieve whatever goals you want to achieve, whether you're deciding on them now or in July. I admire anyone who tries, whether they fail or succeed, in making their lives or the lives of those around them better, in big or small ways. I wish you the very best for a peaceful, loving, happy, and tremendous 2016 filled with, of course, lots of books. Happy Reading!

Can One Have Too Many Books?


One of my New Years resolutions is to become better organized by keeping like items together in one space. Over many years and several conferences, I have collected a good number of paperback books, but had no idea just how many until I pulled a large container from the garage, two smaller containers from beneath a bed, cleared a shelf beneath my desk, gathered others from various spots about the house and put them all in one place. I was obviously shocked at the number. Where was I going to put them all?

Of course the smart thing to do would be to give away a portion of them. I do try, truly I do, but as I go through them, I see a cover I really like, an excerpt that makes me want to drop what I'm doing and start reading, or remember how much I liked a book the first time I read it and can't wait to read it a second, or third time. So many books just waiting to be opened.

The closet in my office is now packed with books, and I plan to read each one before giving it away. But there are those books which touch my soul that I'll never part with.

Can one have too many books? I think not!

Happy reading!

Gwyn

Guest Author - Angela Biera

Please welcome our guest author, Angela Biera. Angela is the author of three romances, Haywire, High Wire and A Second Chance.

Here's a blurb for her newest release, A Second Chance:
Angela is a born and bred Texan. Read more about her here:

Here are some Amazon links for her books:

High Wire

A Second Chance

Haywire



Merry Christmas!

On this special day...

Care deeply
Think kindly
Act gently
and be at peace with the world.

For this is the spirit of Christmas.

I hope your holiday is filled with love and laughter!

Leigh
www.leighcourt.com


Oh No! They Changed My Story!!!

East of the Sun, West of the Moon
Okay, not MY story, but I loved the Norwegian tale I read when I was a little girl.
Here is the version I read.
http://www.pitt.edu/~dash/norway034.html
I loved it but was so mad at the girl for dripping wax on him and making him go away. I felt sorry for him and loved him. Poor polar bear prince. The newer version doesn't sound like it's anything like my version. It's supposed to be good for children to read. You know, probably the sanitized kind. Probably no exploding trolls and such. I like exploding trolls. I like to see the bad guys get their just rewards. :)
And why even bring it up???
It was the very first time that I had read about a shapeshifter and loved the sweet romance. My shapeshifters are not cursed to live their existence until someone can break the spell, yet, it made me see that shapeshifters could be just as sexy and lovable as anyone else.

I'm from the great grizzly bear state of California. And I have all kinds of different bear collections that I've collected over the years. And I make award-winning teddy bears. So it seemed natural to want to write about bear shifters. In honor of reading about a polar bear shifter, my first ever shifter tale, I decided to make it a polar bear shifter story.
Tanner, tan mohair, 10 1/2" Suede paws
Tanner, tan mohair, 10 1/2"
Suede paws
But with all good tales, it must end so I can get back to edits on A Very Jaguar Christmas, which I was told was up on Amazon for preorder now!
http://www.amazon.com/dp/1492621803
And that's it for today. I must go back to my writing cave. Carpet was replaced in the two bedrooms, and rather than shove everything back in drawers and closets, packing it all up. :) So no time for edits yesterday. Just more utter chaos.
polar bear head downThis is me contemplating the next edit.
Have a great one!
Terry
“Giving new meaning to the term alpha male where fantasy is reality.”
Connect with Terry Spear:
Website: http://www.terryspear.com
Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/421434.Terry_Spear
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/TerrySpearParanormalRomantics
Twitter: https://twitter.com/TerrySpear
Wilde & Woolly Bears http://www.celticbears.com

The Relief of the Holidays

I thought I had the holidays under control, and it appears that I do. However, everything else in my life is sort of out of control.

By that I mean my job is crazy. Just a week before everyone's schedules get upset by the holiday furor, my boss announces she's leaving. Then my new boss announces that we have a major project we need to be working on, which leads me to doubt his sanity. What boss in his right mind would expect his staff, who is in the process of finalizing fifty other projects that are due at the end of the fiscal year, to just drop everything that's expected and start a new something or other that he hasn't really explained but wants completed by the first week in January?

The holidays are my relief from my job stress. All the madness that comes from cooking and cleaning and being the family diplomat when Uncle Fred eats the last deviled egg that Cousin Bertha had her eye on is a relief compared to the lunacy that is my occupation right now. At least my day occupation...the writing part of my life keeps me fairly sane, as does the reading part.

Things are hectic, but not so hectic that I've not been thinking about adventure. As in, participating in one. But I can't think of what to do. I want to plan something wild and memorable with my hubby and do it, enjoying every blissful non-working moment of it; however, I don't know what to do. As a writer, I can conceive of all kinds of things, but I really don't think my DH wants to save the world by recovering a stolen diamond from the Tower of London while dodging aliens. I need help on scaling back on what I think adventure is. In other words, I need something that realistically I can do without causing an international incident or an intergalactic war. Any ideas?

I hope your holiday shopping--wait, that's an adventure!--is going well. Mine is done, actually, so all I really need is that post holiday adventure to look forward to. Otherwise, I only get to look forward to my job, and that is, right now, a bummer. Maybe my next adventure should be dusting off my resume and scoping job sites. Hmmm...

Happy Reading!

Let's Say You are a Hunky Jaguar Shifter....

JaguarPride_041714_B
Bigfoot isn't real. Fairies aren't real. The Loch Ness monster isn't real. Not unless someone really scientifically proves it, right?????

So jaguar shifters exist. They keep what they are secret from the rest of the world. Which consists of humans. Period. There aren't that many jaguar shifters. They tend to live in the states bordering Mexico because they go south of the border to let out their jaguar halves in the rain forests were the strictly jaguars live. And jaguars did exist in these states early on.

What if they suddenly encounter a wolf shifter boy??? And learn of their existence.

Would they be considered naive or arrogant not to have believed wolf shifters existed? That's what my editor said.

I don't have every paranormal creature in the books. Every once in a while, a ghost shows up. But mostly, if it's a wolf book, it's just wolves. And if it's a jaguar book, it's just jaguars. Until the newest book I'm working on. A Very Jaguar Christmas, where they discover the existence of wolves.

Why did I do this? My first nine books came out about wolf shifters. No jaguar shifters existed.

Another editor wanted me to write something different. So I began writing jaguar shifters also. But I couldn't just throw them into the wolf world. It's the same world. Our world. But the shifters live among us without letting us know it. So the jaguars were perfectly content to live their lives believing, as we do, that wolf shifters or any other shifters don't exist. UNLESS someone proves to us that they do.

Even the shifters don't know where other shifters exist unless they run across them. Maybe there are some jaguars in Rhode Island. But the Texas jaguars wouldn't know they were there unless they ran into them at some point. They don't live in packs. They have families, extended families, but no packs. And like wolf shifters, they don't advertise what they are. They keep their identity secret so humans don't learn about them.
Book 16
Sure, some might speculate that if jaguar shifters exist, other shifters exist. Just as some may believe in ghosts, reincarnation, psychic abilities, and more. But none of which is verifiable beyond a doubt that would make everyone believe. Right? But then why not believe there are cougar shifters? Bear shifters? Snake shifters? Hawk shifters? Fox shifters? Well, just any kind of shifter??? Wouldn't it be arrogant or naive to believe that others don't exist? Maybe dog shifters? Domicile cat shifters?
Taming the Wild Cougar copy

Just anything, really. But why believe that if they've never seen it for themselves?

As far as you and I know, ONLY jaguar, wolf, cougar, and I hear a bear shifter is going to be revealed in the coming year, but that's our secret. If any of them knew we knew, it's a life changer for us.


And that's my story and I'm sticking to it. :) <3 p="">
What say you???

Have a super Saturday! Mine is filled with edits for A Very Jaguar Christmas AND Billionaire in Wolf's Clothing.  And I have to send in a couple of promo blogs, pack more, get rid of more, clean out more, fill out more paperwork...so why am I still here???

I love being here with you, that's why!

Oh, almost forgot: A Highland Wolf Christmas is on sale for 99 cents only. USD. It looks like it's only for Amazon though. But if you haven't read it and have a kindle, be sure to grab it and spread the word!
http://www.amazon.com/Highland-Wolf-Christmas-…/…/1402293763
Majestic Pines: These trees were saved from being cut down by builders are from an old forest. How old would you say they are?
Majestic Pines: These trees were saved from being cut down by builders and are from an old forest. How old would you say they are?
Terry
“Giving new meaning to the term alpha male where fantasy is reality.”
Connect with Terry Spear:
Website: http://www.terryspear.com
Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/421434.Terry_Spear
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/TerrySpearParanormalRomantics
Twitter: https://twitter.com/TerrySpear
Wilde & Woolly Bears http://www.celticbears.com

Not Your Usual Christmas Tree

I love Christmas. I really do. Really. I mean it. Yeah.

But... it can be a lot of work!

So this year, hubby presented me with this:
















And... it became the whole inspiration for our Christmas tree! For the first time in years, I actually enjoyed decorating it (then again, maybe the wine helped)…









































































Yes, I had a good time drinking... er, I mean decorating... the tree this year. I can see this theme becoming an annual tradition!

How about you? Any special tree-decorating traditions? Cocoa? Christmas carols playing in the background? 

Jenna
www.jennaives.com


Moving Day Sale of Teddy Bears!! Never Before Offered for These Low Prices!

I’m moving! This isn’t want of those ploys where a business says: Moving Sale and then they say the same thing next year and the next and the next.
I’ve never discounted my bears like this, but I had the brilliant idea as I’m packing box after box that if I can sell them at a moving day price, I don’t have to box them up too! Not leaving for a while, so this will give me time to ship them out when they sell.
Mohair Bears–15 inch (price $135-$165 a yard for the mohair fabric) Regular price $59 for the undressed bears, $65 for the Poodle Skirt Bear (the skirt and sweater cost $15.00).
Undressed bears now Moving Sale Price: $39 each.
$49 for the Poodle Skirt Bear. Shipping is $9.75 US per bear.
Sugar Plum Fairy-15 inch Mohair
Sugar Plum Fairy-15 inch Mohair
Peaches-15 inch mohair
Peaches-15 inch mohair
Sugar Plum Fairy-15 inch Mohair
Sugar Plum Fairy-15 inch Mohair
Suzie Q, 15 inch alpaca wool, with poodle skirt and sweater (634x640)
Suzie Q, 15 inch alpaca wool, with poodle skirt and sweater
Santa bears with fully lined cloaks, mohair beards, sack of toys and rabbit fur trimmed hats. 10 1/2 inch plush bears–Regular $65, On Moving Sale: $45 each
Santa Bear with tapestry cloak.
Santa Bear with tapestry cloak.
Santa Bear with tapestry cloak
Santa Bear with tapestry cloak
Mohair Santa bears-Regular $65, Moving Sale: $45
Santa Bear with tapestry cloak
Santa Bear with tapestry cloak–golden mohair
Santa Bear with cloak made from an antique quilt
Santa Bear with cloak made from an antique quilt–golden mohair
Bears of the Kingdom–Regular, $165, Moving Sale: $79 each

Red Mohair Wizard
Red Mohair Wizard 19 inch, wire and wooden body, wooden shoes– One of a Kind
Merlin, Wizard Bear
Merlin, Wizard Bear
19″ pale yellow distressed mohair bear, mohair beard, wooden body and wire arms, and wooden hand-carved shoes, lined wizard cloak, hat, and gown. One of a Kind
King Arthur Bear
King Arthur Bear, velvet cloak, antique tunic with metal embroidery, wood and wire bear, plush, One of a Kind
Prince Charming
Prince Charming Bear
Prince Charming complete with sword, antique hat decoration, and collar, antique brocade vest. Wooden body, wire arms, wooden hand-carved shoes. He’s ready for anything! He’s a string mohair bear, 19″ tall.
One of a Kind
Doctor bear with antique quilt for baby bear, golden mohair bear, antique glasses, wooden body and wires arms
Doctor bear with antique quilt for baby bear, golden mohair bear, antique glasses, wooden body and wires arms

Just let me know if you’re interested in a bear. First come, first serve!

Accepting paypal for bears and will ship as soon as I can.

Happy Saturday!!!

Terry
“Giving new meaning to the term alpha male where fantasy is reality.”
Connect with Terry Spear:
Website: http://www.terryspear.com
Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/421434.Terry_Spear
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/TerrySpearParanormalRomantics
Twitter: https://twitter.com/TerrySpear
Wilde & Woolly Bears http://www.celticbears.com

Guest Susan Ann Wall



Please welcome our guest, Susan Ann Wall!

To celebrate my December 3 release of The Sound of Circumstance, book #5 in my Puget Sound ~ Alive With Love contemporary romance series, I thought it would be fun to share 9 Little Known Facts about the story, characters, and series.

  1. Stacie Nightingale was given her last name after a friend suggested it would be a great name in a romance novel. That is also how Shannon Mercer got her first name.
  2. The character Owen Landry was inspired by an old boyfriend.
  3.  I was writing children’s books when I first started writing about Owen and Stacie, so made Stacie an aspiring author.
  4. Stacie and I both believe chai fixes everything.
  5. The condo building and location where Owen, Stacie, Jenny, and Ty live is inspired by a condo building my sister-in-law once lived in.
  6. The Sound of Circumstance was originally planned to be book #3 in a three book series, until the ideas for The Sound of Betrayal and The Sound of Deception sprouted.
  7. There are currently 7 more novels planned in the series, each story featuring characters who have already appeared in the first five novels.
  8. My brother-in-law is a lawyer in Seattle and provides guidance on all the legal mumbo-jumbo that appears in my stories. I also have an obstetrics nurse friend who provided input on the medical hoopla.
  9. I wrote The Sound of Circumstance for National Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo) and finished the first draft in just 12 days.

Excerpt:
“Stace, there's some stuff I need to tell you.” The dread in her brother’s voice made Stacie Nightingale’s heart drop into her stomach. “Stuff about Greg. He just got fired from the school for sleeping with a student. Other girls are coming forward. Allegedly, this has been going on for years.”
Her phone bounced off the floor and disappeared under the couch as the nausea she’d been battling all day returned, a vengeful stab that made Stacie dizzy with fury. 
Taking a deep breath, she attempted to get her stomach and breathing under control. On the exhale, she closed her eyes and imagined herself on the ferry, taking in the sea air on a sunny day.
Keith’s voice bellowed in the distance, calling her name and asking if she was okay, but Stacie tried to focus on her breathing.
Once it finally settled, she opened her eyes. Though her stomach still threatened to unleash lunch, she couldn’t keep ignoring her brother. 
Dropping onto her hands and knees, Stacie searched for the stupid phone, hearing her brother continue to call her name and ask if she was there.
There was no way Keith could have just said what she heard. Maybe he was messing with her. Except Keith was the nicest guy in the world. He never messed with his sisters.
“The phone slipped out of my hand,” she yelled. Her hand swept across it, causing it to spin. When she finally managed to get a hold of it, she brought it back to her ear with ice cold, slippery hands. A chill raced across her body as she wiped the sweat from her forehead.
“I'm here. Sorry.”
“Don't apologize. I was shocked too. I can't imagine that was easy news for you to hear.” Keith's voice was steady, as usual. As an attorney who specialized in family law, he'd faced off with countless angry parents, disgruntled spouses, and rival lawyers, as well as ornery old judges, so he'd learned how to keep his voice level in the most stressful of situations. A skill Stacie never developed.
“Basically, you just told me my fiancĂ© of six years, the man I was in a relationship with for ten years, was cheating on me with our students. Our students.” She'd intended to take a breath during that sentence, but since she lacked the training and experience of her lawyer brother, she failed miserably. With her lungs nearly imploding, she forced herself to take some of the precious element in.
A key flashed through Stacie's mind. Squeezing her eyes shut, she tried to hold on to the image, to figure out why it seemed so familiar.
But as usual, her amnesia wouldn’t let any memories surface.
“I'm sorry, Stace,” Keith sighed, losing that level tone in his voice and making the vision of the key disappear.
Opening her eyes, she paced slowly, not wanting to wear a path in the new flooring. “How long have you known?”
“I heard about it yesterday. Son of a bitch had the audacity to ask me to represent him.”
“Represent him? For what?”
“He's filing a suit of wrongful termination against the school.”
Stacie would have laughed except for the seriousness of the situation. Of course Greg wouldn't accept responsibility. Nothing was ever his fault. She wouldn't be surprised if he tried to blame it on her somehow.
Settling on the couch next to a napping Daisy, Stacie absently stroked the soft fur. She hadn’t expected the kitten to sleep so much. Didn’t they like to get into mischief? “You're not going to represent him, are you?”
“You really need to ask me that?” If she'd been in the room with her brother, she'd have bet he raised his brow and cocked his head.
“No, sorry.”
“Anyway, I wanted to get more information before I told you, so I called Glenn this morning. He confirmed everything.”
Principal Glenn Richards had been Stacie's boss before she left her job as an English teacher at the high school she'd graduated from.
“Stace, he wants you to call him.”
“Keith …” Stacie fell back against the couch and tucked her feet under her butt, careful not to kick Daisy. She wanted to curl up into the fetal position and forget about her past life, but even moving across the country couldn’t keep it at a reasonable distance.
“Listen. This is important. I know it's unpleasant, but–”
“Unpleasant? It's horrible.” Her voice went up so many octaves, she almost sounded like her mother. “How could he do that? I mean, he didn't even like having sex with me.”
“Stace–”
“Sorry,” she groaned, cutting him off. “I know you're probably one of those brothers who doesn't want to know about his sister's sex life.”
“It's not that. I know you're no prude.”
“I was. At least that's what Greg said.” Stacie shook her head, remembering how things had been with Greg. She had tried so hard to put some passion into their relationship, but Greg wouldn’t allow it. “But that's how he wanted me. Holy Hemingway, all those things he didn't want to do. Is that because he was living out his fantasies with high school girls?
“I can't answer that,” Keith said quietly. He sounded uncomfortable, and Stacie realized she probably shouldn't share her sex life, former or not, with her brother.
“I gotta go.”
“Do not hang up on me,” Keith demanded. Since he never took that tone with her, Stacie kept the phone firmly pressed to her ear and sighed.
Keith sighed too.
Stacie closed her eyes, reaching for a memory she had stopped trying to conjure months ago. It had been thirteen months since her brain surgery, fifteen months since the car accident that killed her friend Audrey and left Stacie with a traumatic brain injury. She didn’t remember the accident, had no memories of that day. After so many failed attempts with her therapist to trigger the memories, Stacie had given up. Audrey would have wanted her to move forward. When Stacie had moved to Seattle, it was to do just that. Remembering the past wouldn’t change anything.
“I didn't know,” she sighed, lurching forward to try and tamp the waves of nausea that just kept rolling. “What kind of a fool doesn't know her fiancĂ© is cheating on her?”
“You're not a fool, Stace.” As Keith said the words, Stacie felt the tingle on her neck that always signaled Owen was near. The condo door clicked shut and Stacie turned to find Owen staring at her.

Purchase links:
Barnes and Noble: http://bit.ly/1j5yGPa

Bio:
Big dreamer and certifiable overachiever Susan Ann Wall embraces life at full speed and volume. She’s a beer and tea snob, can be bribed with dark chocolate, and the #1 thing on her bucket list is to be the center of a Bon Jovi flash mob.
Susan is a nationally bestselling, multi-genre author of racy, rule-breaking romance and women’s fiction. Her bragging rights include nine books in three different series,  three perfect children, adopting an amazing rescue dog, and a happily ever after that started while serving in the U.S. Army and has spanned nearly two decades (which is crazy since she’s not a day over 29).
In her next life, Susan plans to be a 5 foot 10, size 8 rock star married to a chiropractor and will not be terrified of large bridges, spiders, or quiet people (shiver).

Social Media Links

Thank you, Susan!

Fresh Fiction Top Pick For A Silver Wolf Christmas! Happy Thanksgiving Weekend!

Woohoo, received Fresh Pick for A Silver Wolf Christmas from Fresh Fiction Reviews!!!
Pistache in fall colors!
Pistache in fall colors!
And a Red Oak in fall colors!
And a Red Oak in fall colors!
I think these are Pencil Boxwood
I think these are Pencil or Skyrocket Boxwood. They’re evergreen, grow really tall, and remain really narrow.

Okay, and I’m back to cleaning and decorating for Christmas and guests. :)

Have a great Thanksgiving weekend! Are you going anywhere? Eating anything special? Me? Turkey!

Terry
“Giving new meaning to the term alpha male where fantasy is reality.”
Connect with Terry Spear:
Website: http://www.terryspear.com
Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/421434.Terry_Spear
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/TerrySpearParanormalRomantics
Twitter: https://twitter.com/TerrySpear
Wilde & Woolly Bears http://www.celticbears.com