Sunday, December 30, 2012

My First Tattoo at 43 - Kathryn Knight

I admit it, I definitely have a wild side.  I've always wanted a tattoo, and once every few years I would spend time researching the process and looking for artist recommendations.  But it's such a permanent and personal thing, and the one thing holding me back was: what did I want inked onto my body?

I've read enough to know you don't show up at a tattoo parlor and pick "flash" off the wall.  I wanted something meaningful and significant, like what I gave my hero in Silver Lake.  Jason Lansing had the Japanese symbols for an inspirational statement inked onto the outside of his shoulder right before he took the plunge and opened his own Karate studio.

I decided for sure I would somehow want to incorporate the men in my family: my husband and two sons, the most important people in my life.  But the design I had in mind still felt incomplete, and I was lacking the motivation to actually begin the process with the artist I planned to use.

Then I got the "call" last winter, a year ago on a cold morning of December 2011.  Silver Lake, the novel I'd worked on for 4 years, had earned a publishing contract.  It was one of the most memorable moments of my life.

Silver Lake was released in August of 2012, and from the moment I saw it available on Amazon a few days early, I didn't sleep for almost a week.  The excitement of the arrival of a day I had been anxiously awaiting, combined with the stress of knowing many of my family and friends were finally reading my words, fueled an insomnia that lingered until those first few reviews came in.

Somehow, I wanted to include this huge accomplishment in a subtle way into my tattoo design.  Suddenly I knew exactly what it would look like, and I wanted to get it before 2012 - the year I was published - was history.  I quickly made a rudimentary mock-up of what I had in mind and made an appointment with the artist.

Surprisingly, it didn't hurt very much.  I did almost faint before we got started, but that's the kind of thing I do around needles.  The end result is a design incorporating the first initials of my guys with the moon from Silver Lake's cover.  I truly love it, and it serves as a reminder that you have to work for what you want in life, be patient, stay strong, and nurture the gifts you've been given. 





Friday, December 28, 2012

Christmas in Paradise - Atlantis, Bahamas

We're back from a 5-day trip to the Atlantis resort on Paradise Island, Bahamas.  This year, instead of gifts, we decided to take a dream vacation with our best friends.  We had a total of 2 adult couples and 4 kids, and we all had a blast.  The kids had so much fun, they were absolutely fine with only a few small presents under the tree.  It was great to have family time, friend time, meet new friends, and commune with nature via all the beautiful aquariums at the resort. 

The three hotels surrounding the main water park area are (in order from least expensive to most) The Beach Towers, The Coral Towers, and The Royal Towers (pictured).   

Along the grounds and inside and outside the Towers are various aquariums.  The most amazing one is outside the Royal Towers (of course) and is called The Ruins.  One whole wall of the lowest level of the tower is glass for viewing.  I believe this is a nurse shark hanging out on the sandy bottom.  Believe it or not, you can sign up to snorkel in the enormous tank, with the sharks (harmless), colorful schools of fish, and manta rays (too large to even imagine, see below - that one was about 14 feet long!).  They are all swimming in an undersea world featuring remnants of a lost civilization.  We were not able to do The Ruins snorkel adventure because we did not sign up ahead of time...all slots were filled.  So first piece of advice if you go: sign up for all the activities you are interested in ASAP!  The same applies to reservations at the restaurants.

 



There are beaches too of course, the one below is the ocean right outside the water park.  The kids had fun in the waves but it was too cold for us!  We took walks instead (we went all the way out to the little tip at the end of the curve!), searching for shells and sea glass.  There's also a man-made beach within the Atlantis complex with a roped-off area for swimming.  In addition, the Dolphin Cay complex has activities you can schedule such as dolphin and sea lion encounters.




Just walking through the water park is an adventure.  There are 11 slides, 11 swimming areas, 2 lazy rivers, and plenty of waterfalls and wildlife along the way.  One of our favorites was the rope bridge over the hammerhead shark pool (no swimming there!)









Plenty of things to keep kids busy during the day, and nighttime brings movies, teen and tween clubs, and shopping.  Extravagant yachts are tied up along the walk to the marina, parades go by regularly, steel drum bands play, and the casino beckons if you're feeling lucky.  We had a little cocktail hour of our own each evening on the balcony and watched the sunset.  Below is a pic my son took of me and my hubby, heading back from the pool the last evening.

 
 
Probably the best additional tips I can give for trying to save money at this very expensive resort relate to food and beverages (a case of water at the local grocery store--off the resort property--is still $32!).  Pack as much food as you can in your suitcase.  Crackers, raisins, nuts, cereal, etc.  We had a 1-bedroom suite and that did not have a kitchen, but we reserved a fridge for $15 a day.  Then we went to that infamous grocery store (walking distance from resort) and bought soda, juice, coffee creamer, and wine.  An even better idea would be to have a taxi stop on the way from the airport and buy these things before crossing the bridge to Paradise Island.  We'll know for next time.  Despite the sticker shock, it was an amazing vacation that created memories for a lifetime.

Sunday, December 16, 2012

Vacation in Atlantis - City of Lost Money? Ideas on saving welcome!

This year for Christmas, instead of gifts, we are taking our kids to the Atlantis resort in the Bahamas.  They have always wanted to visit this wonderland of water slides, lazy rivers, teen nightclubs, aquariums, and beaches.  Even though we haven't been shopping at the malls (a BIG plus), this vacation is going to be incredibly expensive.  Apparently even visiting the gym to work off all the amazing 5-star meals will cost $15 a day.  And that's nothing compared to the cost of a "dolphin encounter"...still debating that one.  So this week I'm asking for money-saving tips from anyone who has been.

This waterslide goes through a shark tank!


Here's what we've done so far:  rented a fridge, for $15 a day.  We figured it would result in savings in the end if we stock up with half and half, sodas, yogurt, wine, etc.  Now, where to shop for these things?  I'm bringing a jump rope and a resistance band so I can do my own workout.  A very few activities appear to be free, such as movies, bingo, and the rock climbing wall.  Other suggestions to not be in debt for the rest of 2013?

Friday, December 14, 2012

Friday Quickie: 25 Quick Facts about Kathryn Knight

Today fellow The Wild Rose Press author Sarah Grimm is hosting me for her Friday Quickie...I answered 25 short questions, but some of them really made me think!  Stop by and see my answers on her blog:  http://authorsarahgrimm.blogspot.com/2012/12/friday-quickie_14.html  Happy Friday!

Sunday, December 9, 2012

The Next Big Thing - Silver Lake by Kathryn Knight


Thanks to fellow TWRP author Willa Blair for tagging me in The Next Big Thing Blog Hop!  I'm talking about my first novel this week, which released in September.

What is the title of your book?

Silver Lake, which is the name of a fictional lake in Fairfield County, CT, and the setting where the book takes place.

Where did the idea come from for the book?

The idea began through my obsession with ghost stories and movies. I read and watch them all, and one big loophole consistently bothered me. More often than not, the ghost writes some cryptic message somewhere—in a fogged-up mirror, on a wall, in spilled food on the kitchen counter. Of course, this serves as one more clue in the mystery, but what I always wanted to know was—if the ghost can write a message, why not just spell out exactly what it needs? The ghost never says “Look for my body in the basement” or “The butler did it”. And so my idea was born. The ghost in Silver Lake, Brandy, needs help—a certain set of circumstances—to get her message across.

What genre does your book fall under?

We have 2 lines of Paranormal Romance at the Wild Rose Press. Silver Lake is Paranormal Romance - Faery Rose.

Which actors would you choose to play your characters in a movie rendition?

This tv actress Molly Burnett reminds me of Rain
Oh, boy, I don't know many actors...especially the under 25-year-olds! Here's how I picture the characters though:



This hot model reminds me of Jason, a 4th degree black belt 
 













What is the one-sentence synopsis of your book?

After experiencing haunting nightmares, a group of former friends reunite to try to solve the 5-year-old mystery of their friend’s disappearance; amidst the escalating paranormal activity at the lake house, the two main characters, Rain and Jason, get a second chance at romance.

Where can we get your book?

It's available in both print versions and electronic versions, all buy links are under the Silver Lake tab which is linked here.

How long did it take you to write the first draft of your manuscript?

Two and a half years. I had the story in my head for years before I found the courage to start writing it down. My husband finally convinced me, and I began writing Silver Lake in a notebook during an 8-hour car ride!

What other books would you compare this story to within your genre?

Comparisons are difficult...but this book has enough mystery and suspense to appeal to both women and men, judging from the reviews and comments I've received. It is also taking off with the YA crowd, although it's not specifically a YA book, it was added to a Goodreads list as a best YA book of 2012.

Who or what inspired you to write this book?

My inspiration was really my genuine love for ghost stories mixed with romance.  For me, a mysterious and spooky paranormal element combined with a tension-filled romantic relationship is the perfect recipe for an exciting read.  Basically, I created my favorite type of novel!

What else about your book might pique the reader's interest?

A recent review at Between the Pages had this to say about the hero in Silver Lake: "Jason Lansing makes a wonderful hero, both sharp-edged and gentle, he’s a man neither Rain or I could resist." From my readers, the one thing I hear over and over is "I couldn't put it down" - music to my ears!

 Please visit the next stops on the Next Big Thing Blog Hop:

Lisa Hannah Wells  http://memorymakerscreator.blogspot.com/

Tasarla Romaney  http://tasarlaromaney.wordpress.com/

 Beth Trissel http://bethtrissel.wordpress.com/
 
 

Friday, December 7, 2012

Romancing the Novelist Interview - Kathryn Knight

Today I'm excited to be featured on fellow The Wild Rose Press author Christine Elaine Black's blog!  She came up with some great, fresh questions for me in her Romancing the Novelist interview.  Plus, today's her birthday, so stop by and say hello and learn more about Silver Lake and Maximus!  http://christineelaineblack.blogspot.com/p/romancing-novelist.html

Monday, December 3, 2012

Bad Boys with Good Hearts - Kathryn Knight

Who doesn't love a sexy bad boy with a hidden heart of gold?  It's a common theme in romance novels, TV dramas, and screenplays.  There's just something intoxicating about a hot, dangerous hero whose actions reveal an inner gentle kindness.  Bad boys are often misunderstood, forced into a role chosen for them by circumstances out of their control.  But there is still a very real risk involved in getting close to them--and that's part of the thrill.

Here are my Top Five Favorite Fictional Bad Boys.  While their characters embody the perfect tough guys with redeemable qualities, it doesn't hurt that the actors portraying them are smoking hot!

5.  Anson Mount as Cullen Bohannon, a former Confederate soldier working on the country's first transcontinental railroad in the show Hell on Wheels.  Intent on avenging the rape and murder of his wife, his true motive is to discover the identities of the former Union soldiers responsible so he can kill them.



4.  Norman Reedus as Daryl Dixon, the proficient zombie-killer on The Walking Dead.  Daryl had a traumatic childhood filled with abuse and neglect, and consequently grew into an emotionally-detached loner.  But the post-apocalyptic scenario brings Daryl into the fold of survivors, who value him as a leader and protector, and his character's true compassion begins to emerge.














3.  Josh Holloway as James "Sawyer" Ford, the "anti-hero" of Lost.  Sawyer witnesses the murder-suicide of his parents after they experience financial ruin at the hands of a conman.  Sawyer becomes a conman himself in order to fund his quest for revenge.  On the island, he alienates himself from the other crash survivors with his manipulative, selfish, and sarcastic behavior.  But eventually he falls in love with Kate and begins to show his sensitive side.






2.  Damon Salvatore, the dark older brother on The Vampire Diaries, is brilliantly portrayed by Ian Somerhalder.  A love triangle in the 1800s between Damon, his brother Stefan, and a beautiful vampire begins to tear the two brothers apart...when Stefan turns into a vampire and essentially forces Damon to turn as well, Damon vows to torment Stefan.  However, he always has Stefan's back when outside danger threatens.  When the brothers find themselves in love with the same woman again, Damon fights to be honorable and steer her toward the 'good' brother.  More on Ian here.



1.  Charlie Hunnam is Jax Teller, the President of the outlaw motorcycle club Sons of Anarchy.  Jax's childhood was intertwined with the club: his father founded the club, and his mother married another prominent member when an "accident" left her a widow.  But with the club comes a culture of violence, crime, and blood feuds.  Jax has finally started a family with his first and only love - his high school sweetheart - and he desperately wants to protect his wife and sons from the dangers of his lifestyle.  But he can't remove himself from the club entirely.  If he abandons his father's dream of a group of brothers who live outside the rules of society, not only will the club deteriorate further, but Jax will lose his opportunity to bring his father's murderer to justice. (P.S. - more on Charlie Hunnam and his lookalike, Travis Fimmel of Vikings, here).








Had to include this pic too!
My hero in SILVER LAKE has a bad boy streak as well--despite being kind and caring, he is also protective and strong.  Jason is a 4th degree black belt in Karate...but will that help him keep his first love safe from a desperate ghost?  While I don't have a picture of an actor for Jason, I do have this hot martial arts guy who will serve nicely: 


So that's my list!  Who are your favorite bad boys with good hearts?

PS More pics on my Pinterest Board!






Friday, November 30, 2012

Romance set in Ancient Rome - blogging with the author of Maximus


Today I'm excited to host fellow The Wild Rose Press author Christine Elaine Black on her first guest blog appearance. Her historical fiction romance Maximus released this past Wednesday, and it sounds absolutely fascinating to me! She's answered a few questions for us, and you can find the blurb at the end of the interview.

Kathryn: Thanks for being here Christine! I'm a big fan of historical romance, and I love the idea of a setting in ancient Rome. Where did you come up with the idea for this story?

Christine: The idea for Maximus came from my love of reading ancient historical fiction. I've always been fascinated by the time period but never found many romance novels set in ancient times that deal mainly with the relationship of the main characters. I decided to change that.

Kathryn: It does seem like a fascinating time period, one which I admittedly don't know a whole lot about. What books have made an impact on you as a reader and a writer?

Christine: Strangely the books to impact me the most are not especially romantic. Pauline Gedge writes Egyptian historical fiction in such a way that I'm transported to her world and care about her characters within moments of starting the journey. Jack Whyte wrote a series of novels about the origins of Excalibur and Merlin. He writes with a mastery and skill that leaves me in awe.

Kathryn: The research part of writing accurate historical fiction seems overwhelming to me, but I'd like to try it some day. It sounds like your reading preferences have helped quite a bit with the research involved for Maximus.

Christine: Yes, I've read many ancient stories and studied ancient cultures. It feels natural for me to write about the Roman world. They play a huge role in our daily lives if we stop to think about it. Roman numerals, calendar months, Latin words morphed into English, the forum, the senate, etc. I love the phrase 'All roads lead to Rome'. At one time it was true! I never get tired of reading and writing ancient stories.

Kathryn: Wow, I never really thought about that but it's certainly true! So who gave you the most support throughout this journey?

Christine: I've received support from many quarters, including online writing groups, but my family have given me their unfailing support to pursue my writing. Happily my daughter is a budding writer.

Kathryn: It's so important to have family behind you, since writing tends to become all-consuming, at least in my experience. That's great that your daughter wants to follow in your footsteps. I bet everyone was so excited when you received your contract. Can you tell us about that day?

Christine: I was so ready to receive my contract when it came. I'd been tweaking the book for months before sending in the finalized version and then it became a reality when I opened an email from my editor saying she wanted to request a contract and shortly after it arrived. It's a special moment of validation for a writer to have that elusive agreement.

Kathryn: It's one of the best feelings in the world - I will never forget my day (Dec. 16, 2011 lol). Are you interested in trying any other genres?

Christine: I have written other genres. Maximus is a trequel and book II was accepted by The Wild Rose Press and will be published in 2013. Yay!! I've dallied into the world of contemporary romance, 18th century romance, and I've also written a Y/A fantasy/medieval adventure for my daughter. They're on my future submissions list.

Kathryn: Wow, that's exciting to have book II under contract already! I can't wait to read both. Sounds like you are a very diverse writer...can you tell us a few things about yourself outside of writing?

Christine: Outside of writing is my love for musical theatre. My daughter performs in youth theatre and I love to help costume the cast and assist backstage during the run of the shows. Music and a sense of humor are important in my daily life.

Kathryn: Nice! I agree, a sense of humor is an absolute necessity in life. Thanks for sharing with us, Christine. Enjoy the blurb for Maximus below:

Carissa Valeria distrusts the handsome soldier who rescues her reckless son from plunging to an early death. Recalling the man's heartless treatment of her from years ago, she itches to even the score, but her son hails the rescuer as a hero. When he becomes her neighbor, her son's friendship with the soldier threatens to uncover old secrets and place her family and her heart in danger.

Exiled to the countryside by the Roman emperor, Maximus Octavius is confounded by the brittle countenance of the woman he's willing to befriend. She's afraid, and he's determined to find out why. But helping Carissa and her son means confronting the guilt of his long-forgotten past and stirring the silenced passion in his heart.

Can Maximus win Carissa before fear and revenge tear them apart forever?


 

Buy Link Amazon:  http://www.amazon.com/Maximus-ebook/dp/B00AEFFXNK/ref=sr_1_1?s=digital-text&ie=UTF8&qid=1354138659&sr=1-1&keywords=maximus

Buy Link TWRP:  http://www.thewildrosepress.com/index.php?main_page=product_info&cPath=176_138&products_id=5049

Thursday, November 29, 2012

Sunday, November 25, 2012

The Breaking Dawn Twist (spoilers!)


I admit it, I enjoyed the Twilight books.  It’s no coincidence I’m a paranormal romance author—it’s my favorite genre.  I happen to think Stephenie Meyer is a great storyteller.  However, I saw Breaking Dawn Part 2 this weekend (SPOILERS AHEAD), and I was shocked at the so-called “twist”.  Somehow I didn’t know about it beforehand, which is shocking in and of itself.  But as the battle broke out and main characters began dying, I thought, “Wow, they really went a different way than in the books”.  And I was a bit impressed, thinking the screenwriters had injected some sad and tragic events into the story to bring home the tension: this battle was so fierce; some of the beloved characters might die.  Even though I wasn’t worried about Bella or Edward dying (it is, after all, still a romance in need of a Happily Ever After ending for the hero and heroine), I suddenly realized the stakes were high for the rest of the Cullens and the wolf pack.

 

Then what seemed like a fairly long battle scene suddenly ends when we realize this is all just one of Alice’s visions, as related to the head of the Volturi.  Yes, I was glad Carlisle, Jasper, and the wolves especially were still OK.  But I’ve always thought (and read) that using “it was all a dream (or vision)” as a plot device was the ultimate cop out.  So what actually happened in this movie is that two armies of vampires convened from the corners of the earth, met for an epic battle, and then instead engaged in a mental war which ends peacefully.  While I remember the book being exciting to read, I guess that’s not the stuff good movies are made of. 

 

I won’t go into the acting (although I read one review that made me laugh when the reviewer said the best actors in the movie were the animated wolves), but I wasn’t all that impressed.  Nevertheless, I actually went to the movie theater and spent money to see this film, which for me is highly unusual.  I much prefer to read books for entertainment, and this movie helped remind me why.  When I heard there was a “twist” to the movie that wasn’t in the book, I was skeptical…the other films have followed the books closely.  So the vision scene made it exciting and entertaining and scary for me, for 27 minutes, but in the end I felt a bit cheated.  How did you feel about the twist?

Friday, November 23, 2012

Sale and Freebies at The Wild Rose Press!

If you've been cooking, cleaning, and shopping, or by chance dealing with family drama, you deserve a treat for YOURSELF!  All digital titles at The Wild Rose Press are on sale this weekend, including Silver Lake, my paranormal romance:  http://www.thewildrosepress.com/index.php?main_page=product_info&cPath=177_139&products_id=4973

Lose yourself in a ghost story/love story with an irresistible hero and a suspenseful, spooky mystery.  In addition, The Wild Rose Press has put together a collection of healthy recipes which can be downloaded for FREE - our holiday gift to you:   http://www.thewildrosepress.com/index.php?main_page=product_info&cPath=195&products_id=5080 A Healthy Holiday Garden Gourmet has all kinds of good-for-you meals submitted by the authors of The Wild Rose Press.

Enjoy!

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Tons of prizes at The Romance Reviews YES Party!

Today I'm participating in the Year-End Splash (YES) Party at The Romance Reviews.  There are over 100 prizes to win this week, including a chance at a $100 gift certificate!  Silver Lake's question is #19, the correct answer will enter you in the drawing for a free e-copy!  (Hint - the answer can easily be found on this blog or my website).

Here's the link to the contest page, have fun!  http://www.theromancereviews.com/event.php

The cover-matching game is for the grand prize, or you can play for the individual weekly prizes.  You must register to play but that's free and easy.  Good luck!

Thursday, November 15, 2012

Coffee and Writing - A Perfect Combo #amwriting #noguilt


I admit it, I LOVE coffee.  I love everything about it – the taste, the smell, the caffeine, the warmth.  In the middle of a heat wave, I will still order hot coffee instead of iced.  I drive around with a refill mug in my car so I don’t have to feel bad about the Styrofoam cups.  And don’t give me any foreign flavors—coffee with some half and half, that’s it.  No ingredients, variations , or sizes that I can’t pronounce.

Hello darkness my old friend
DRINK ME!
I'm reposting the list I found last year of the Top Ten Coffee-drinking Professions.  Not surprisingly, I was on there: Writers/Editors clocked in at #6.  Here’s the full list, courtesy of a survey done by Dunkin Donuts and Careerbuilders:

 
                                                                          
1. Food Preparation/Service Workers

2. Scientists

3. Sales Representatives

4. Marketing/Public Relations Professionals

5. Nurses (Nurse, Nurse Practitioner, or Physician Assistant)


6. Editors/Writers/Media Workers                                   

7. Business Executives

8. Teachers/Instructors (K-12)

9. Engineering Technicians/Support

10. IT Managers/Network Administrators

Not sure either why we’ve been made to feel as though coffee is a guilty habit.  Everything I’ve read recently points to the many good qualities in my cup of joe.  An article I saved points out that while coffee is associated with caffeine, it’s important to remember that coffee is only 2% caffeine and 98% other stuff, including chromium, magnesium, and antioxidants.  So while caffeine can negatively affect some people with certain medical issues, that amount of caffeine is fine for most people.  In fact, a few new studies suggest that coffee may help lower the risk of several diseases: Type 2 diabetes, liver cancer, cirrhosis, and Parkinson’s.

I enjoy my coffee so much that I brew it half-regular, half-decaf.  That way I can have an extra cup without feeling jittery or experiencing insomnia.  Of course I transferred my coffee obsession to the characters in SILVER LAKE…but a reunion at a haunted lake house amongst old friends (and old flames) trying to solve the cold-case mystery of their friend’s disappearance pretty much requires coffee, don’t you think?  Especially when Brandy’s ghost gives them sleepless nights. 

The characters in GULL HARBOR love coffee too.  When Claire first moves into her temporary summer home on Cape Cod, she has a rough early morning search for the coffee maker.  But she, too, is having sleepless nights...not unexpectedly, as she's a medium who's been hired to rid the house of a destructive spirit.  The coffee served up by Dan at Gull Harbor Diner brings her back repeatedly to the popular local's joint--but it's a small town, and she finds she can't avoid seeing Max there either.  She has no idea how he ended up in the sleepy seaside town--throughout their passionate college relationship, he promised to love her forever.  But then he disappeared without a hint of an explanation on graduation day.  The town may or may not be big enough for the both of them, but Claire has a job to do: find out why an aggressive ghost is haunting her clients' home, and help the desperate spirit move on.  However, someone connected to the death might have a problem with the truth coming out...
 
I've got my cup in hand right now as I finish this blog post.  Hopefully I can make some progress on manuscript number 4 before I have to get to work.  My other job is teaching fitness classes, and I need my morning java to do that effectively as well.  Plus, it's Monday.  Time for a refill!

True Love


 

Monday, November 12, 2012

Gull Harbor Cover Reveal - Kathryn Knight

Thankfully, I've had many inquiries about my next release...Gull Harbor is also a romance with paranormal elements, and I'm very excited about this book.  While I don't have a firm release date yet, I DO have the approved blurb and cover art to share!  Today I'm featuring the cover, by artist Rae Monet.  It's absolutely gorgeous, and it brings together the main elements of my fictional seaside town of Gull Harbor: the coastal waters surrounding the jutting arm of Cape Cod, and the isolated wilderness between the ocean and the bay, dotted with kettle ponds and woodlands.  While the house portrayed on the cover is not meant to be "the" actual haunted house in the book, it accurately conveys the town I've created in my mind...a place that, while beautiful enough to draw tourists from around the world in the summertime, grows eerily quiet in the off-season...a place where secrets may hide and ghosts may lurk...and a place where two people with a painful past find themselves unexpectedly thrown together to face dangers that extend beyond the paranormal.  I hope you enjoy the sneak peek at the cover - blurb to come soon!





Thursday, November 8, 2012

Sandy's Sister Storm - Kathryn Knight

Down goes the tree
So this happened in front of my house today!  I have to say, the Nor'Easter that blew in last night hit my neighborhood worse than Sandy.  Thankfully we are situated far enough North to have escaped the main wrath of Sandy.  This new storm, however, blew down this huge tree branch, which hit the power line (while my early-riser husband was nearby, grabbing yesterday's mail before it got drenched) and BOOM, out went a transformer down the street.  A little fire started in the branches and I began making calls.

No power all morning left me in a state of dazed confusion.  On my one morning off, how could I not visit my blog, FB, email, my author loops, etc.?  But I lit some candles and got busy, finding a surprising number of things to do.  Baskets of paperwork have been filed or recycled.  My notebook of ideas is organized.  Laundry folded.  Coffee was cold, but hey, I was warm and dry inside.

The worst thing about this storm for me (and of course this is nothing compared to what people have endured with Sandy) was that it hit on the night of my first library presentation/author discussion/book signing.  When schools and community centers began canceling all afternoon events, I knew I was sunk (no pun intended, lol).  But I forged ahead anyway, since it had been advertised...me in a raincoat with my box of books and freebies and poster.

No one braved the storm.  I hadn't asked my friends to come to the library discussion - they've bought and read Silver Lake and been so supportive already.  So as I sat, somewhat dejected in the discussion room, playing with my note cards, in rushes my best friend.  I hadn't asked her to come or even told her about the event...but she saw my post on Facebook and rushed over on a dark, beastly night.  I almost cried.  We rescheduled the event with the library director and went to the little tavern next door for a glass of wine.

That's a true friend.  And that's what Rain, the heroine in Silver Lake, used to have in Jason, Allie, and A.J., before Brandy disappeared.  It's no wonder she wants them back in her life--although being around Jason, who was once more than a friend, creates a painful longing that ratchets up the tension in the haunted lake house.  Click the Silver Lake tab to read a blurb and excerpt!

How did you weather the storms?

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

Guest blogging about Reunions!

Thanksgiving is often the time of reunions - school, family - and Nancy Jardine and I are blogging about reunions at her site today.  Come by and share your stories!  I've planned my 25th high school reunion and it's in less than 20 days...nervous and excited.  Link to join us:  http://nancyjardine.blogspot.com/

Welcome to she said, he said: Reunion fun!: Today, I'm welcoming fellow TWRP author, Kathryn Knight. She's brought a topical subject for me - reunions.

Friday, November 2, 2012

Guest blogging at Between the Pages!

Today I'm talking about where I got my idea for Silver Lake and how I found the time to write it all down!  Plus Silver Lake got a very nice review, come visit and say hi :)

Between the Pages: SPOTLIGHT IS ON: Author Kathryn Knight - Where do ...: ABOUT THE BOOK: Amazon Buy Now Rain Anderson can't decide which is more unsettling—encountering the ghost of her missing fr...

Thursday, November 1, 2012

Haunted Blog Hop Winners!

A big thank you to everyone who stopped by on TWRP's Haunted Garden Blog Hop.  This was my first blog hop and I had a blast.  AND I won Somewhere My Love by Beth Trissel and since it's a ghost story and romance (my favorite combination!) I couldn't be more pleased! 

I WIN!

Now, for the winner of this blog's drawing...Congrats to
Beckey White on winning a copy of Silver Lake
Hope everyone had a Happy Halloween and weathered Sandy with minimal damage.

Friday, October 26, 2012

Black cats, Halloween, & a ghost story #giveaway


I love black cats.  I adopted two from a shelter 15 years ago, when they were about 6 months old.  Sadly, Shadow passed away last year, but the other is still going strong, even in his advanced years.  Spazzy has some white on his face and paws, and earned his name as a crazy kitten.  He is constantly on the prowl for a lap to snuggle in, so the minute you sit down in my house, be prepared to stay put a while.

Shadow’s name fit him as well.  He was skittish and wary, but also sweet and loving.  He was scared of most people, yet I saw him chase neighborhood dogs off our property more than once.  Shadow was completely black—dark and sleek and beautiful.  I would never think of him as a symbol of bad luck, but I can see how people might view black cats as mysterious and otherworldly.


I miss my Shadow kitty dearly

The ancient Egyptians believed cats had magical powers, and regarded them as sacred.  In fact, they worshipped a feline goddess known as Bastet.  On the other hand, Druids feared cats.  All cats are nocturnal and appear dark as they creep through the night, sure-footed and stealthy even with no light to see by.  This gave all cats a mystical aura, but the color black has often been associated with sinister forces.



Black cats, along with bats and spiders, have long been considered by some to be bad omens.  Some cultures believed witches could turn into cats in order to avoid capture.  Black cats were also thought to be familiars—low ranking demons tasked with serving and protecting a witch.

Even with a limited understanding of diseases, societies throughout history were also able to see the connection between cats and outbreaks of plague.  Cats control rodent populations, and rats are carriers of many diseases deadly to humans.  This added to the idea that cats had powers beyond human comprehension.
 
Thus, an association with witchcraft and the occult, superstition, fear, and awe combined to make black cats a symbol of Halloween, the night when the barrier between the paranormal and physical worlds grows thin.  Silver Lake, my debut paranormal romance, revolves around a restless spirit—the ghost, Brandy, is desperate to communicate with her living friends.  In order to help, Rain and Jason must reunite, and together they’ll face not only a haunted lake house, but their own painful past. 
My Spazzy kitty
loves boxes
            And while not central to the story, our heroine, Rain, owns a black cat named Minx.  I hope you’ll take a moment to read Silver Lake's excerpt and blurb below!  If you'd like to enter the giveaway for a free e-copy, please leave a comment with contact info.  Happy almost - Halloween J


Blurb:
 
Rain Anderson can't decide which is more unsettling—encountering the ghost of her missing friend, or reuniting with the man whose love she foolishly rejected. But one thing is certain: the past has come back to haunt her, quite literally.
 
Five years ago, Rain's tight-knit group of high school friends unraveled when one vanished during their senior year. Now, a parent's deathbed request has reunited the friends at Silver Lake, including Jason Lansing, the man Rain discarded. Rain and Jason discover the powerful attraction between them has survived, but though Jason is willing to forgive, he can't let himself forget. The possibility of falling for Rain again is too risky.
 
Slamming doors, crashing objects, flaring fires—clearly the ghost has a message to share. As Rain and Jason struggle to unravel the truth, they must face a desperate spirit in need of help…and a burning passion that refuses to die.


Excerpt:
            “I saw...a figure.  A figure with dark hair, and I think it was Brandy.”  She shuddered and put her forehead back on his chest. 
Reluctantly, he moved their bodies apart a bit and scanned her face.  He held on to her shoulders and asked calmly, “You saw Brandy?  Brandy is here?”
            She shook her head.  “No, I saw… like… an image of Brandy.  I woke up, because it was cold, and I saw something moving.  It was Brandy, I’m sure of it, although I didn’t see her face clearly.  And then she, um, disappeared.”
            “An image of Brandy?  Are you saying you saw a ghost, Rain?”  He was pretty sure she’d had another nightmare, but the way she had flown out of her room gave him the impression it had been an extremely vivid one.
            “I know, it sounds ridiculous.  But that’s what I saw.  And she sort of, well, went through the wall.  I’m sure you don’t believe me,” she added miserably, lifting her stormy eyes to his.
            He pulled her back into a hug before he could stop himself.  “I absolutely believe you.  Whether you were awake or asleep, you saw Brandy and that’s scary.  I don’t think we can deny that weird things are happening here.”
            Jason smoothed her hair and waited patiently for her trembling to subside.  If a ghost really was lurking in her bedroom, there wasn’t a whole heck of a lot he could do about that.  A rare sense of powerlessness caused his jaw to clench in frustration.
He stopped watching the door and instead focused on the gorgeous woman in his arms.  She clung to him, and his body responded to hers with a familiar ache.  He knew he was losing the battle to keep his feelings platonic.
 
 


Thursday, October 25, 2012

True ghost story!

Today I'm blogging about the ghost who lives on the farm depicted in Stephen King's 'Salem's Lot!  What an excellent and TRUE Halloween story, PLUS my host Lilly Gayle is running a giveaway contest for my haunted love story Silver Lake.  Stop by and enter by leaving a comment and contact info!  http://lillygayleromance.blogspot.com/2012/10/my-guest-this-week-is-sister-twrp.html?showComment=1351164122429#c965087695204988211


Friday, October 19, 2012

Contest Winner!

And the winner is....texxie88!  Congrats, texxie, I'll be emailing you soon!  Thanks so much to everyone who came by and commented and followed, I really appreciate it.  And if you would still like to win a copy, I'm giving THREE more away before Halloween.  After all, Silver Lake *is* a ghost story :)  I'll be running contests as a guest blogger at Lilly Gayle's blog as well as Long and Short Reviews, and I'll be doing one last one here on Halloween at the end of The Wild Rose Press Halloween Haunt blog hop.  So please do check back to get those dates.  I'd tell you now if I knew myself, but I don't, lol.  In the meantime, anyone going to see Paranormal Activity 4?  Looks super spooky!


How do you like my super high-tech system of tupperware and paper?


Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Inaugural Post and Giveaway!

Welcome to the inaugural post of my new blog!  I'd smash a champagne bottle on the computer but that would probably result in a big mess, a broken computer, and a waste of champagne.  Anyway, I'm glad you're here, please consider following my blog so I'm not all alone here in cyberspace.  Plus, you'll be entered into the SILVER LAKE E-BOOK GIVEAWAY CONTEST!  Yes, that's right...all you have to do is follow the blog and leave a comment with a way to contact you if you win.  Silver Lake is a reunion romance and a ghost story, a perfect read for the Halloween season, and one lucky winner will be chosen at the end of the week (Friday, 10/19).  You can read the blurb under the Silver Lake tab or even click on the Amazon buy links to read excerpts and the first chapter.  Thanks for coming by!