Are you having as busy a time this holiday season as I am? I am currently at my in-laws, helping them organize for a major move from a three bedroom house to a smaller two bedroom villa in a very lovely retirement community. They have to move out of the house on Dec 27, so you can see that the timing is not great for anyone.
Nothing helps with holiday stress as much as reading Christmas romance novellas! This morning I started my friend Mary Blayney’s Father Christmas, which you might be able to still get for free if you hurry. I had to force myself to put it down and get to helping with the downsizing. I love Mary’s Regencies and this contemporary romance novella is every bit as charming, emotional, and romantic as her other books.
I also just finished Louisa Cornell‘s A Perfectly Dreadful Christmas in the anthology, Christmas Revels: Four Regency Novellas. Louisa writes with a great deal of humor and wit, but, at the same time, she made me cry. What could be better than that?
Then there is my friend Darlene Gardner‘s just released Her Very Merry Mistake. After a hiatus from writing romantic comedy, Darlene is back with this light, breezy Christmas story. Because, as Darlene says, “there’s no better time than the holidays to fall in love with love.”
There are other Christmas novellas on my Kindle, just waiting to be read:
A Christmas Reunion by Susanna Fraser
A Partridge in a Pear Tree by Amanda McCabe
And if that isn’t enough, I can check this list–twice: What Christmas Novellas are you enjoying this year?
As if this wasn’t a busy enough time of the year, our cats are acting up. Yesterday, this fellow was caught relieving himself in the dining room! This has usually meant he has an infection so off to the vet we go.
Turns out, he was fine, so now today I took the-cat-who-used-to-live-on-the-kitchen-table to the vet, because she is not eating and now she is the more likely candidate for a urinary infection.
So far tests look like she might be okay, too.
I’ll also eventually have to take this fellow to the vet.
All of them have needed their shots, but I was hoping to delay until after Christmas.
These are all old cats with health problems. Our lady cat is 19 years. The black and white cat is 17 and the devil cat who started the whole episode is about 11 years old, so health problems are expected, but why now?
I just announced this on the home page. Innocence and Impropriety is now available as a manga ebook–but only in the UK.
Innocence and Impropriety came out in Japan as a manga print book and I blogged about it then. I never expected to see in printed in English! So frustrating that I can’t even buy my own ebook–at least in this version.
Harlequin doesn’t always let the authors know when issues like this one are coming. Sometimes I learn about foreign books and special releases when my copies arrive in the mail. It’s always like receiving a surprise package!
If you are lucky enough to be able to purchase UK ebooks, here are the links to this version!
Innocence and Impropriety, Volume 1
Innocence and Impropriety, Volume 2
Or you can, like me, just go to the Amazon.co.uk pages and pine….
I also have a new contest and that’s open to everyone!!
Great deals for UK ebook readers!
Diane’s Innocence and Impropriety – Manga-style (vol 1 and vol 2)
Mills and Boon Historical Romance Best of the Year Bundle!
And for everyone, Diane has a new contest!
I hope you all have a wonderful Thanksgiving. We can make it wonderful by remembering all we are thankful for. There is always so much.
Image(s) courtesy VintageHolidayCrafts.com
Here’s a random list of 10 things I am thankful for:
1. My husband, children, and their significant others.
2. My lovely grandson
3. My sisters
4. My in-laws and cousins
5. My friends, every one of them
6. My good health
7. My cats
8. My writing life
9. Memories of England
10. My loving upbringing, with loving parents
I am so lucky for the people I’ve had in my life!
What are you thankful for?
Yipes. I’ve missed two Thursdays of blogging! I have no excuse, really. Last Thursday I got my hair cut, but that’s not enough to miss blogging. This week I just needed a day to veg.
Do you ever need that? A day to do nothing useful, to just sit and watch endless episodes of House Hunters or Hallmark Channel movies or a Law and Order marathon? That was my yesterday and it sure felt good!
I was supposed to go out of town to help my in-laws, but they cancelled at the last minute. I didn’t even unpack my suitcase. I just relaxed and watched TV all day.
It was glorious.
Did you ever have a day like that?
Bound for Duty, Book One in Diane’s new four book series, The Scandalous Summerfields, is coming to bookstores March 17, 2015. But it’s available now for pre-order!
One of the stops on the Duke of Wellington tour was Dover Castle. Dover Castle is the largest castle in England and dates from medieval times. Its use as a defensive place may have predated the Roman invasion in 43AD, but it took its now familiar shape during the reign of Henry II in the late 1100s. Its history continued to the Napoleonic Wars and even to World War II.
It is a grand structure!
We had to take a little trolley up to the main area of the castle where there were several exhibits, including this model of the castle during Henry II’s time.
There was a model of a medieval dining hall (that’s my sister Marilyn!)
Marilyn and I climbed up to the highest point possible and were rewarded by these spectacular views!
And what could be more inspiring that this view?
Notice, too, that the weather was absolutely beautiful that day!
Where have you been that you’ve seen such a breath-taking view?
This Saturday, November 1, is the day we in the US “Fall Back,” turning our clocks back one hour and returning to standard time. Over 200 Historical Romance authors (including me!) are using this day to Fall Back in a different way.
Fall Back in Time
We want readers to celebrate Historical Romance, that genre where we can all escape into an earlier time, when men were men and women may or may not have been ladies.
It is my special joy to escape into Regency England, a time of great drama and beauty, a period of social change where the old rules are questioned and where one constant prevails–true love is the path to happiness.
So we Historical Romance authors want to get a huge buzz going for Historical Romance and we need the help of all our readers and fellow authors.
It’s easy to do!
1. Take a selfie with a favourite/recently read Historical Romance.
2. Post it to social media sites starting on 10 am CST 1 November 2014. Please include the hashtag #FallBackinTime. If pictures start sneaking out on the 31st and continue through the 2nd that’s okay, too!
3. Post to the Fall Back in Time facebook page or the Historical Romance Author facebook page on Nov. 1st.
4. Spread the word about our love for historical romance through tweets and facebook posts.
Here are some generic tweets you can use:
#FallBackinTime to your first historical romance. This was mine! (pix)
#FallBackinTime with this historical romance! (pix)
Look, it’s me in the [middle ages/regency era/etc] (pix)
If I could #FallBackinTime, it’d be to this book, this era: (pix)
Where would you #FallBackinTime to? I’d go here: (pix)
My favorite time machine is a book. #FallBackinTime (pix)
If you don’t want to do a selfie, then just post to facebook or tweet without it. Just join us in celebrating Historical Romance!
I’m getting ready!!
See you November 1!
One of our stops on the Duke of Wellington tour was to Highclere Castle. What does Highclere Castle have to do with Wellington?
Not a thing.
But who could resist visiting the country estate that plays Downton Abbey?
It was every bit as beautiful as in the series.
We could not take photos inside the house, but the grounds made up for that. They were just lovely.
There was a folly, Jackdaws Castle, built in 1743 using Corinthian columns salvaged from Berkeley House in London which burned down in 1733. Its main purpose is to be admired from the Castle.
There were lovely views.
This was through a garden gate archway.
Here’s a picturesque wall.
And another view.
And, finally, some topiary.
Playing Downton Abbey rescued Highclere Castle for the Earl and Countess of Carnarvon. The house and estate require much upkeep and the building was facing expensive repairs when this opportunity came for them. Now the house is secure for years.
When I was walking the grounds of Highclere Castle, I imagined living there, taking leisurely walks in the evening. What a life that would be!