AuThursday – Constance Bretes

EITM CB Banner

CB Author PhotoTell us a little about yourself and your background?

I was born and raised in Michigan, met my husband there, and worked for 38 years for the State of Michigan before retiring. We moved from Michigan to Montana in 2015, and then last year, we moved from Montana to Alabama for medical reasons. I have no children of my own, but I do have a step-son. I am owned by 3 kitty cats and the doggie that lives next door. I published my first book, Delayed Justice, in 2014. Elkhorn in the Moonlight is book #9, and Midnight Escape will be #10 and published later this year. When I’m not writing, I like to spend time with my husband and our fur babies, love to read romance novels, love to basket weave, fiddle on the piano, and sit on the swing on my back porch.

How do you make time to write?

Since I’m retired, and a homebody, I have plenty of time to devote to writing. The hardest point for me is to just sit and write. When I finally do sit to write, I have all my resources at my fingers, and my husband is gone to do his thing……

Do you work to an outline or plot or do you prefer just to see where an idea takes you?

I have a loose outline to guide me through the story. Just something that tells me what I want to put in.

Do you ever get writer’s Block?

Yes, a couple of times I went through writer’s block because of my medication. While in Montana, I was sick quite a bit, and couldn’t sit down to write, and when I could, I couldn’t due to the medications. Other times like right now, I have so many manuscripts in various stages of edits, that I just can’t sit and write, so I work on edits.

How did you deal with Rejection Letters if you received any?

I put them away. Then look at them later, when the sting goes away.

What are your current projects?

I am working with my publisher on the final edits for Midnight Escape to be released this summer. I have a military romance I’m working on, Operation Code Name: Desert Love, I am almost ready to submit another manuscript to my publisher called Love, A Second Time Around, I’m also working with a group of ladies called Common Elements Romance Project, we have taken 5 items, and have agreed to put them in our books, and we are publishing our books later this year. It is the first time I’ve ever self-published. My book is called The Haunted Love Affair. I’m working on three books, Roadside Love, Roadside Desire and Roadside Passion. It centers around two brothers and a sister who find love in a small town in Wyoming. All are related but standalone.

Which actor/actress would you like to see playing the lead character from your most recent book?

No actress for Nicole, in Elkhorn in the Moonlight, but someone I know in Basin, Montana, where we lived. For the hero, Marcus, I have Martin Sensmeier, a Native American actor.

What advice would you give to aspiring writers?

Keep writing, keep mastering the craft of writing and don’t give up.

Where can readers find you on the World Wide Web?

http://constancebretes.com

https://www.facebook.com/conniebretes/

https://twitter.com/ConstanceBretes

https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/7737457.Constance_Bretes

Email:  bretesc@gmail.com

http://beachwalkpress.com/constance-bretes/

https://www.bookbub.com/profile/constance-bretes

https://www.amazon.com/Constance-Bretes/e/B00IKSKRES/ref=dp_byline_cont_ebooks_1

https://plus.google.com/u/0/+ConnieBretes

Instagram: constancebretesauthor

Newsletter:  https://www.constancebretes.com/news–things.html

Do you have an excerpt you’d like to share with us?

CB-ElkhornintheMoonlight-1600x2400 (6)“You pass it every time you go into Mason. The other two are on the other side of the overpass. Sandpiper Mine you can see from the highway, but you have to go on Gulch Mine to get to the Elkhorn Mountains. The mountain ranges there are the highest, and there are a lot of vertical drops, so you’d have to travel where you can walk it. It’s not something where you can climb it and be there. You have to go in a roundabout way.”

“Do you have a very clear vision of where this cave is, and how to get to it?” he asked.

“Yes. I remember it clear as day now.”

“How soon can you get yourself ready for the hike?”

“What? I’m not going there. You are. I can’t just take off and leave, I have work to do. Plus, it’s way too cold to go there right now. The mountains in that area still have snow on them.”

“You think I would know where to go by the information that you provided?”

“I gave you very good information,” she said.

“Do you have the coordinates for GPS?”

“No. I don’t.”

“So, you think that I, who have never traveled these mountains before, would have no problem finding that cave?” Marcus’s eyes narrowed as he regarded her.

“I don’t have any idea how you intend to get there. Personally, I think you should wait until summer to do it. The weather in the mountains is unpredictable.”

Marcus sat thinking about the situation for a second, and then he said, “Name your price.”

“Huh?”

“I said, name your price,” he repeated.

“I need you to lead me to that cave, and I have to do it this week.”

“You’re not listening to me. I can’t take you there. I have work to do here. I can’t leave to go on a weeklong camping trip.”

“You can for a price,” he said grimly.

“You can’t buy me off to get what you want,” Nicole said defensively.

“Everyone is willing to do certain things for a certain price. Will thirty thousand get you interested and willing to go?”

“I…I…thirty thousand? No, I won’t be bought,” she stammered.

“Look, Nicole. Let’s quit with the games. I’m going to go there to get those Sacred Arrows, and you are the one who is going to take me there and bring me back. I’m offering you thirty thousand for a week…week and a half of work. I think your brother and his wife can handle the motel for that length of time.”

“I’m sorry.” She stopped for a few seconds.

“I won’t be bullied. My answer is no.” She stood up to leave.

“Just think about this. Like I said, thirty thousand for a week and a half of work. Think what you could do with that money. Think of all the possibilities and opportunities you’d have. As for the weather, I know you have lived through worse weather right here in Mason. You know what to expect. I would not let you go up there without your GPS, your cellphone and satellite phone, your two-way radio, and letting your brother know exactly where you’re at should there ever be an emergency. I’ll give you until tomorrow at noon to tell me your decision, and if I were you, I’d think about this very seriously. I intend to have my way in this,” he said sternly. Grabbing his maps and the pictures she gave him, he walked back to the causeway and to his room.  

 

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Saturday Spotlight – Heart and Hand by Rebel Carter

heart and hand tour bannerTitle: Heart and Hand

Author: Rebel Carter

Genre: Historical Romance

Release Date: January 22, 2019

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/42983552-heart-and-hand

Cover Design: Najla Qamber Designs

Blurb:

Anyone who was absolutely anyone knew the story of how Julie Anne Baptiste’s parents met: the blue-blood Union cavalry officer and the freedwoman on her way North fell madly in love at first sight, all in the midst of the Civil War. It was legendary within New York City’s Four Hundred, and from girlhood, Julie daydreamed of her finding own true love match. But now, as a well-seasoned debutante of twenty-one years, Julie only dreams of teaching and much prefers the vibrant world of her books over the company of society’s most eligible bachelors.

However, always the dutiful daughter, Julie performs the role of affluent debutante until she realizes all of her tomorrows have horrifyingly become occupied by a gamut of social engagements, and they will remain so until she marries. Desperate and knowing only a wedding will put a stop to the madness of living as a debutante, Julie does the unthinkable: she responds to a mail order advert in the Heart and Hand Matrimonial Times. No longer a girl fantasizing of love, Julie did not anticipate forming a genuine romantic connection with the man she corresponds with, but when ex-Union soldier Forrest Wickes proposes she readily accepts. All seems well until the society pages intercept one of her letters and within the hour all of New York knows of Julie’s decision to become a mail-order bride.

In fact, the New York City society pages don’t know they only reported half the truth about Julie Baptiste. The debutante intends to marry not only Forrest Wickes but also his best friend, William Barnes. Her secret of taking two husbands safe, Julie sets out for the Montana Territory before the papers can learn the truth. But how will a debutante-turned-teacher manage frontier life with two husbands? Doubts loom and Julie wrestles with how to tell her family the truth about her marriage. And then there’s the vivacious young widow who enjoys a close friendship with Will, who maliciously hints that all is not as it appears to be with Julie’s husbands.

Buy Links: Kindle Unlimited

Amazon: https://amzn.to/2E5wxBh

Amazon CA: https://amzn.to/2MlRzgb

Amazon UK: https://amzn.to/2MnwqSI

Amazon AU: https://amzn.to/2MjgNMp

Author Bio:

Rebel Carter believes in magic and witty meet-cutes, and she hopes you do, too. Hailing from the South, Rebel has a deep affection for anything fried, battered, or smothered, and enjoys a mint julep or measure of whiskey when the occasion calls for it. She suffers from a severe case of wanderlust and has lived all over the world. Now she spends her days in the beautiful state of Colorado with the mountains serving as a daily inspiration to go after big dreams–her biggest of all is to write full-time.

Social Media Links:

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/rebelwrites/

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/rebelwrites/

Twitter: https://twitter.com/rebelwrites_

heartandhand_v8Excerpt #1 (Julie)

Julie frowned. “Are the pair of you trying to get rid of me now? After all this time? All th-those letters?” She wrung her hands together, her mind already leaping to what the society pages would proclaim at her being rejected as a mail-order bride.

Forrest sat up straight when he heard her frustrated tone. “Now, Julie, we weren’t—”

“Because I’ll have you know that I very much have made up my mind to be married, gentlemen.” Julie crossed her arms over her chest in defiance, though it was hard for her to stay sitting upright given the swaying nature of the wagon, and she almost cursed when she fell sideways, prompting a quick hand from Will to catch her before she tumbled headfirst out of the wagon.

Will let out an exasperated grunt. “Life won’t be easy with us.”

“Yes, I know this. Forrest was perfectly clear in the year of letters we exchanged.” She gave Forrest a meaningful look that had the big man blushing.

“So I was.” He glanced over at Will and added, “So we were.”

Julie raised an eyebrow in surprise. “You wrote me?” she asked, looking at Will, who was leaning back in his saddle and looking like he wished to be anywhere but there.

“Sure did,” he answered, but said no more.

“You never…I didn’t know it wasn’t you.” She gave Forrest a look of reproach, but he only shrugged.

“Made sense for you two to talk beforehand if you were serious about having the both of us.”

“Well, I suppose so,” Julie sighed. If polite New York society thought it already had the juiciest drama from her little adventure, it would fly into a tizzy over what Julie had truly decided to do. Though the spy who had told the pages about her plan to go West had ruined her efforts at secrecy, they hadn’t discovered the whole of her plan. If they had, Julie wouldn’t have just made the society pages, she would have sustained them for society pages, she would have sustained them for months, possibly even years. And she might still if her secret ever came to light, which was that Julie Baptiste, heiress of the esteemed Baptiste family, hadn’t simply agreed to be a bride for the sake of a teaching position and the chance of adventure on the frontier to one man.

She’d agreed to do it with two.

Excerpt #2 (William)

God, woman, where are you in all this lace?” he huffed, making sure to get the entirety of her train safely up on the bench next to her.

“It’s the height of fashion,” she informed him primly.

Will snorted, still shoving swaths of silk satin up next to her. “Seems like a waste.”

Julie stiffened at his casual comment and looked down at her hands, even though she knew he couldn’t see the hurt in her eyes, not with the near darkness they were in, relieved only by the bright light of the moon.

Noticing that she’d gone still, Will sighed, “I didn’t mean—Julie, you looked beautiful today.”

“Thank you,” she said, her voice small. She kept her eyes on her lap and, working to keep her voice even, began to ask about Forrest when Will spoke.

“Darlin’,” he tried, one of his hands coming to rest over both of hers, which were tightly clasped in her lap. “I’m sorry. Sometimes I speak before I think. Y-you were the most beautiful thing I’ve ever seen in my life today.” He picked up a fistful of her skirt and gave it a gentle shake. “This wasn’t a waste. Not an inch of it.” He was whispering now, voice low and husky. She could hear the sincerity in his voice and she swallowed hard at the raw emotion she heard.

 

Saturday Excerpt – A Highland Ruby by Brenda B. Taylor

AHighlandRubyHe dozed and dreamed of Flora in the emerald gown again. Now her waist-length hair matched the deep red color of the large ruby hanging from a gold chain. The ruby and gold glinted in shards of green light flashing around her and in her eyes. How lovely she appeared, with flawless white skin, ruby-red hair, and eyes to match the emerald gown. Gavin’s heart near burst with her beauty. While he watched, Flora removed the ruby from her neck, dipped the stone three times in a crystal goblet of clear water. The water turned red as the ruby.

She held the goblet out to him. “Take this and drink. The ruby’s water will drive the evil away and make you weel.”

“Aye. I desire to be well.” Gavin reached for the beautiful crystal chalice now filled with red water.

Just as his hand touched the chalice, a large boot kicked his foot. Flora disappeared with the red, healing water. Gavin’s eyes popped open. He remained still, grabbing the sgian dubh from his boot with one hand and the pistol from his belt with the other.

 

Join me next week when we meet author Linda Rae Sande!  ~Tina

 

 

 

 

Saturday Sexcerpt –

This is from FALSE IMPRESSIONS, (Marianne’s)  latest release and the third book in the McKay-Tucker Men series. Each book is a standalone.

falseimpressions

“If I could reach out and hold a star for every time you’ve made me smile, I’d hold the sky in the palm of my hand.”

“You are a tease,” she said as she stretched her tiny feet. He and Sam were in their usual spot on her couch in front of the fireplace, cuddled close, hands constantly touching each other.

“No,” he said, grabbing her hand and kissing her fingers. “That’s actually not a line. Well, okay, yeah, it is, but I mean it. Well, I mean them all, but it’s true, Sam. You’re an amazing mother. And you’re beautiful. And funny.” He kissed her fingers again. “And sexy. And…”

He cupped her cheek; she closed her eyes, turning her face into his hand. Slowly, he tilted her face toward his and kissed her lips. They tasted sweet, like tea, and wet and willing. She opened her mouth wider for him, and her tongue danced with his. Unsure who the moans were coming from, he pulled her body closer to his, wrapped his arms around her, and then lifted her on top of him. He knew he shouldn’t push her, especially with his secret looming over them, but she smelled like freshly fallen snow and her skin was as soft as a baby lamb’s coat. Everything about her was pure and innocent, and he was the devil trying to turn her into a black sheep. And damn if her body wasn’t one hundred percent receptive.

What a teaser!   Join me next AuThursday when the Clog Blog hosts A. Catherine Noon of “Noon and Wilder” and “The Writer’s Zen Garden” 

Until then, Be Naughty!

~Tina