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All posts for the month July, 2018

Taking a chance (#MFRWAuthor)

Published July 27, 2018 by francesothomas

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With the jackpot so high, I rushed out to buy lottery tickets earlier this week, so this week’s blog topic is apropos: If I won the lottery…

Well, of course, I would buy the obligatory new house and new car if my winnings were great enough. Our car has well over 100,000 miles on it, so I think I’d be justified in finding a new ride. And sadly, my husband’s health is not great, so a home closer to medical facilities would be a relief and a blessing.

Besides those obvious purchases, I would give money to family and to causes dear to me, the arts and mental health. I would also indulge in taking classes to my heart’s content.

A shopping spree? Maybe a mini one. A girl can always use some new clothes, but my lifestyle isn’t such that I need anything too fancy.

I think the greatest benefit of winning a lottery in whatever amount would be peace of mind, just knowing the money is there for any unforeseen crises. I do, after all, live in the hurricane belt. In fact, I drew on my experience with Hurricane Charley in Southern Hospitality, the second book in Calusa Town Tales.

But enough about me. Read about the pipe dreams of other authors here.

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Is beauty only skin deep?

Published July 23, 2018 by francesothomas

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This award-winning novel is free today only. It’s book four in a popular series. Buy it here.

 

**Winner of the prestigious 2015 RONE Award for best New Adult fiction**

Modern-day pirates took more than Jori Virtanen’s friends; they stole his face. Not only does the twenty-four-year-old former model have to confront months of reconstructive surgery, he discovers his previous life was as superficial as his looks. Up-and-coming talk show host Olivia Howard wants an interview. She, like the rest of the press, expects a hero, but Jori knows the truth. His beauty masks a beast.

In seclusion and evading the press, Jori struggles to make a new life as an artist. But he can’t hide from himself; more than his face is damaged. How can Jori possibly make amends for all that he’s broken? When Olivia finally tracks him down, he must decide if he can trust her. Could this unlikely woman be a key to freeing his heart and healing the beast?

Necessity is the mother of invention (MFRWAuthor)

Published July 20, 2018 by francesothomas

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The weeks are flying by. It won’t be long until it’s Christmas which brings me to this week’s blog topic: my favorite holiday memory.

Every year, the local firemen set up a Christmas tree lot in the playground across the street from our house when I was growing up. One year, my mother and I chose a tree and brought it home to set up. How we struggled. No matter what we did, that tree just would not cooperate. It refused to stand upright in the metal holder.

Fortunately, my brother was still a baby that year. In utter frustration, my mother dumped the contents of his diaper pail out and shoved the tree in. Success! The additon of a carefully draped piece of cloth as a tree skirt completed the decor. No one would ever have guessed she didn’t plan it that way.

Read about other holidays here.

 

 

Sparks of love

Published July 18, 2018 by francesothomas

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This new novel with a popular trope is available to preorder here.   My small town romances are set in a fictional town loosely based on the real town where I live. I wonder if Soda Spurs, Texas, is real. And isn’t the idea of a heroine who is an auto mechanic intriguing?

Here’s the blurb:

All the money in the world means nothing without someone to share with with.

Billionaire actor Brent McKasson wanted something different in life. Tired of being typecast in the same action roles, he decides to take some time off to think. However, his car breaks down in the small town of Soda Spurs, Texas. Forced to rely on people he doesn’t know, Brent rediscovers the charm of a small town and a feisty female mechanic, but will it be enough for him to stay or will the fame call him back?

Sam Jenkins moved to Soda Spurs after a hard breakup. All she wanted to do was open up an auto shop and return to her small town roots. Then Brent McKasson lands in her lap. Literally. She’s the only mechanic in town, and with the only hotel in town booked for the Cowboy festival, she is forced to open her spare room to him for the weekend. What she hadn’t expected was to open her heart to him as well.

But can a spark between two opposites create a lasting love? Or will his fame and her independence keep them apart?

Sing a song (#MFRWAuthor)

Published July 13, 2018 by francesothomas

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What’s the topic this week on Marketing for Romance Writers blog hop? It’s creative outlets I enjoy.

My favorite outlet is music. I have been singing for my entire life. At first, I sang at church, then in the chorus of the community college I attended in Pennsylvania. After I graduated, I sang in  several community choruses in Pennsylvania and in Florida.

At present, I am a member of the Symphonic Chorale of SW FL. We self-produce two concerts a year plus two events to which we invite community singers to participate. Coming up in August is Summer Sing where we will rehearse and perform Rutter’s Requiem in the space of a single evening. Next spring, we are hosting Coro Rapsodia, a chorus from Uruguay, for our annual Sing Out. It’s a similar process to the Summer Sing, but lasts two days.

In addition, we sing two concerts a year with the SW FL Symphony Orchestra, a Holiday Pops performance and a classical Masterworks concert.

In fact, it was while sitting on stage waiting to begin a program of operatic choruses that the idea for the book I am working on now came to me. The working title is The Maestro and revolves around a fake engagement.

To read about other creative outlets, go here.

Not your mother’s planner

Published July 11, 2018 by francesothomas

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Are you a busy wife/mom/student/working woman? What you see above is a valuable tool to help you get your time and your tasks under control. But this is not your mother’s planner. Besides writing down your daily appointments, this planner helps you keep track of your budget, plan meals, organize your schedule, and—most importantly—helps you CRUSH your goals.  That last phrase is right from the mouth of Ruth Soukup.

I have come to admire Ruth Soukup for her honesty, creativity, and business savvy, so I decided to become an affiliate for her products. Her new, improved Living Well Planner® edition goes on pre-order today. If you decide to buy it here, please be aware I’ll get a commission. I’ll be very grateful if you do.

As you can see, the new edition features a pretty, hand-drawn floral cover design. Ruth and her team have completely refreshed the interior too. It will only be available while supplies last.

The planner will begin shipping on August 31st, and anyone who orders a one between July 11th and August 31st can take advantage of Early Bird pricing. ($39 versus the new regular price of $49.) This Early Bird pricing applies to the signature striped Living Well Planner® design above as well, which also features a refreshed interior.

In addition to the price discount, anyone who preorders will also receive some bonuses: Ruth’s 2 very favorite sticky note pads FREE with their planner purchase—the Weekly Wizard™ (an $8.50 value) and the Daily Do-It™ (a $9.50 value). Both are designed to work with the planner to help you better organize your week and your days, respectively, by helping you prioritize your to-do lists to make sure that the most important things get done first. Best of all, you can stick them right into the weekly planning pages of your planner to keep yourself on track all week long.

The calendars inside the planner are undated, so you can begin using it for the upcoming  fall school term if you wish. Or you can wait until January and FINALLY accomplish those New Year’s resolution once and for all. And wouldn’t it make a wonderful Christmas gift for family or friends?

It’s all up to you.

Sibling Silliness (#MFRWAuthor)

Published July 6, 2018 by francesothomas

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What is the most fun I can have while dressed? Marketing for Romance Writers blog hop wants to know. Another easy topic.

I don’t get to see my sister and brother very often. They live too far away. So when Christmas holidays roll around, we spend hours catching up and reminiscing. My poor husband has heard these stories many times and generally bids us good night and heads for bed.

It doesn’t take long for us three siblings to start laughing. My brother, in particular, never fails to crack me up. I often end up in tears from laughing so hard.

My husband has learned to don ear plugs.

How do other authors have fun? Check out their responses here.