Monthly Archives: September 2015

Why Our Author Brand is More Important than Ever Before #MFRWAuthor

It’s a beautiful September morning, my favorite time in New Mexico. I was preparing a quick pictures and pithy comment blog when Kristen, once again, gave me a quick mama wolf shake. Pay attention! she told me. I did, and I think you should too.

Kristen Lamb's Blog

Image via Flickr Creative Commons, courtesy of Mike Licht Image via Flickr Creative Commons, courtesy of Mike Licht

For the past few months I’ve been focused on writing and not on social media. Hey, even the Social Media Jedi can get burnout 😉 . But now we’re going to shift gears because, aside from writing the actual book, social media (branding) is the biggest part of our job. And I can hear the moaning and gnashing of teeth already.

Here’s the thing. We don’t have to do social media. No one will take us to writer jail if we don’t. So I will narrow this down. If you simply love the art of writing and don’t necessarily long to be paid for writing, social media is not that big of a priority. Social media is only important for those of us who like money.

Thus, for those of us who want to make a living as a professional author…

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Immersed in the Details #MFRWAuthor

I did not grow up on Leonard Cohen. I mention this since he is apparently 81 today, and many people have indulged themselves in his music for decades. The first time I heard a Cohen song was on West Wing, when Mark Harmon’s Secret Service character is stupidly killed in a convenience story robbery. An incredible song comes up in the background and I’m hooked. What IS that song?

I heard it again during the Canadian Olympics.What WAS that song?

Oh. Hallelujah. And I started listening to that song song by so many artists, in so many iterations. Including by Mr. Cohen himself. And still, I had more to discover. This man is a Romantic in every sense. Forget hard muscled cover models. Just turn down the lights, grab your beverage of choice, and listen to this.

Oh. Oh, my, yes. I’m not quite sure why exactly the horses are there but they work for me.

I had no idea Leonard Cohen was involved with The Scent of a Woman…hey, I was wrapped up in dogs and horses and just plain life. Because of that, look at how much fun I’m having in discovery. This time I watched instead of just listened. Because Al Pacino brought mastery to every detail of his dance. You have no doubt this man is blind as he draws you into the dance. His hand on her back is formally sideways, until the touch becomes more intimate, palm flat on her back. Performing an intimate dance in a public setting.

And just to round out a romantic evening


If you hang around, you’ll get the Shrek version!

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Beauty…It’s All Around Us #MFRWAuthor

OH NO I'm in an airplane

OH NO I’m in an airplane

This last weekend was spent traveling without dogs, to a meeting in New Jersey. Which means, yes, flying. There are very few direct flights from Albuquerque, so I also got to visit a multitude of airports and eat in new restaurants. Expensive, but I have to say airport food has improved immensely in many locations. Too bad I never change planes in Albuquerque since there are some yummy places to eat.

I was on my last leg, Denver to home, after a somewhat rough flight out of Newark. Not a long walk to my gate, although airports do have great opportunities to pile on those steps. What else are we going to do while waiting to line up to board? 027BTW, it’s 100 steps around the terminal circles in Newark; If you use the outer edge of the circle it’s more like 125.

My thoughts were mainly focused on being home with my ‘lukis when I realized this particular wing of the Denver airport faced west, and the sun was setting.

I backed up to get just the right light and grumbled at myself for not bringing my camera. Because it just got prettier.

030Excited by this generous display of nature’s majesty, I showed the picture to the person sitting at the podium.

“That’s pretty,” she said while checking herself in her compact mirror. “Where is it?”

Ummm, well…out THERE???

Beauty is all around us, we just need to open our eyes and our hearts.035

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A Bit of Music; A Bit of Nostalgia #MFRWAuthor

Because it’s just so danged beautiful

And this one

Because I’ve been thinking of times past, opportunities missed, and opportunities won. Enjoy


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Don’t Impose on My Romance

For me, love is love. What I choose for my life might not suit anyone else but it is liberating to be able to make my own choices. This is such a special post, I’m so happy to meet Alec
The same with writing. I’ve chosen a less erotic style of romance because it suits me. Now I have to work a little harder to rebrand myself and reach out to a slightly different audience.
But it’s all good.


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It Really Can Be Like Your Baby. Sort Of #MFRWAuthor

2015_8 Labor of Love hop_D2 copyThere’s an Amazon discussion group titled BBA, Books are Not Babies. The group ,mainly discovers and discusses authors who have lost perspective on the whole publishing game, and defend their books from all criticism, claiming their books are their ‘special babies,’ not to be criticized in any way.

Yeah these people can get a bit extreme especially when they start trying to argue with reviewers. In case you were wondering, no, you do not want to be arguing with reviewers.

However there are some significant similarities between producing a book and producing a child.

It can take months, or even years, to complete a book. During that time you build and grow your germ of an idea until it is

ready for the real world. When it comes time to reveal that book to the world you polish up the outside until it’s slick and shiny and just plain pretty. Same as dressing your child in their very best to meet the family.

Each time after I finished my first books I felt a vague unease, as if everything was a let down. Similar, I realized, to postpartum depression. I had lived and breathed that book for months and now…it was done. There was nothing more I could do with the book and it seemed there was nothing else I really wanted to do.

This is when some writers turn to reading obsessively, catching up on books they missed while immersing themselves in their own book. Some are able to immediately

Teach Me To Forget, a story of rebirth and trust

turn to a new story, particularly if they’re under a time crunch. I tend to garden and usually come out of my stupor to look around a the piles of piles of who knows what that at one time pretended to be tables in my work area.

There’s nothing wrong with thinking of your book as your ‘baby’ as long as you don’t then decide to protect that baby from the cold cruel world. Do the best you can with writing, with editing, then slap that best dress in the closet on as a cover and send it off to prom. You have a lot more where that one came from!

Plus we have a LOT more great blogs in this hop. Check them out, then do the Rafflecopter magic. Winner gets a Kindle, and a LOAD of wonderful books. Second and Third prizes are gift cards. And if you drop in on the Facebook group you’ll find discussions and recipes and contests all weekend. Check it out here:   a Rafflecopter giveaway//


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The Future is Bright #MFRWAuthor #Laboroflove

That would be the future of Romance writing.

Judging from the entries I saw in the LERA Rebecca contest, the art of writing Romance is alive, well, and awesome. Fresh ideas, expertly presented Any flaws were a matter of technical skills, not technique. All in all, a wonderful experience.

From a personal gain point of view, did the time spent judging these entries do me any good as a writer? Did they promote my writing, my story ideas? No, but there are things we do for love, because they simply make us feel better.

Speaking of what we do for love, don’t forget the upcoming Labor of Love Blog Hop. The Facebook planning page is now public. Check us out: Labor of Love Facebook page

As you know, I’ve been lovin’ Low Carb for a few years now, and sharing as much as I can with you. This week I made the Loaded Cauliflower to have some prepared meals for when I was editing, packing, just trying to keep going. Except I, well, I added some things. Fortunately this isn’t a sensitive recipe!

That would be this recipe: Loaded Cauliflower


Servings 3 Units US

  • 2 12 cups cooked cauliflower (I use frozen, cooked until tender, in the microwave)
  • 1 cup sour cream (low fat works here, too)
  • 34 cup shredded cheddar cheese (full-fat works best)
  • 3 green onions, finely chopped
  • 3 -6 slices crumpled cooked bacon or 3 -6 slices turkey bacon
  • salt and pepper

Check Out Our Top Cauliflower Recipe


  1. Pre-heat oven to 350.
  2. Chop cooked cauliflower into very small pieces.
  3. Mix sour cream, 1/2 of the green onions, 1/2 of the cheese, 1/2 of the bacon, and salt and pepper to taste in medium bowl.
  4. Stir in the cauliflower.
  5. Place in medium baking dish and sprinkle remaining cheese and bacon on top.
  6. Bake for 20 minutes.
  7. Sprinkle the remaining green onions on top just before serving.
 I used frozen cauliflower, about 1.5 of th e12 ounce packages. A healthy few handfuls, maybe a cup? of broccoli cuts. A package of bacon (12 ounces…ever notice how a package of bacon isn’t a pound any more?) substituted some cream cheese for part of the cheddar, for creaminess. And added a nice dollop of chopped green chiles. Maybe half a cup? Bueno Autumn Roast Extra Roasted Chopped Green Chile, 13 oz
Then be ready to enjoy! But don’t forget to save some for later since this version is far more than three servings, and then you’ll have something to munch on during the hop!


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