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Archive for the ‘Robyn Carr’ Category

The contest is over and the winners are Pat and Melody May! I’ll be contacting you to get you your prizes! 

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Things at the Barrett house have been crazy, what with work, writing, kids, school projects, my own projects, birthdays, anniversaries, and oh, yes, the release of Blaze of Winter (yay!). It is not a coincidence that today I’m at Romance @ Random with a post entitled De-Stressing in Autumn. In it, I lay out five steps I’m going to take to help me relax. They are:

(1) Set aside some serious reading time.

(2) Take a walk outside in the crisp, fall air.

(3) Bake something autumnal.

(4) Listen to my favorite fall music.

(5) Try not to get wrapped up in the little things.

I think these are good first steps, and I want to start on them immediately because goodness knows things aren’t going to get less stressful as we head into holiday season. In fact, I already began by baking pumpkin bread and banana raisin muffins (which admittedly aren’t the most autumnal, but certainly do smell good). I’d love it if you stopped by here or at R@R to give me your best tips on how to relax!

On the writing front, things are going well, but never as quickly as I would like. I’m about halfway through Slow Summer Burn (Star Harbor #4), and I just got edits back for Long Simmering Spring (Star Harbor #3). I’d like to have everything done by the end of 2012, which is extremely ambitious with my work/family schedule. We shall see how things play out.To make everyone (including myself) a little less stressed out, I’m doing another giveaway! Hooray, a giveaway! (See, I’m less stressed already!) I have tons more book goodies from RWA and one copy of Robyn Carr’s Sunrise Point that went unclaimed during my last giveaway. I’ll give two winners a couple of books each from my awesome romance stash.

Rules:

(1) Winner must be a member of my mailing list. Please sign up for my mailing list here.

(2) In the comments section below, tell me what you do to relax.

(3) TWO random commenters will be selected.

(4) U.S. only, please! (I’ll be shipping paperbacks).

(5) Contest ends 10/21 at 9pm, PDT.

Good luck! I can’t wait to hear from you!

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The contest is over and the winners of Robyn Carr’s Sunrise Point are Maureen and Danielle B. Thanks for all your comments!

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Though I live about thirty-five minutes from San Francisco, I actually don’t get into the city all that often. My weekday schedule is kind of insane, and the last thing I want to do on the weekends is drive up to the city, three kids and husband in tow, to go do something far away when there’s plenty of parks, playdates, and pools with walking distance.

But last Friday, I was in the city not once, but twice on the same day–first to see the Cindy Sherman exhibit at SF MoMA (it was mesmerizing), and then to attend a farewell dinner for one of my good friends who’s moving away to take a position at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas. I considered it a huge treat because I’d had a really productive week, which culminated in me turning in my completed mansuscript for Long Simmering Spring, Star Harbor #3 (Cole’s story).

Now SF MoMA is in SoMA, the south of Market area that, at this point, consists of tech startups, museums, warehouses and hip restaurants. But dinner was at the center of one of the coolest parts of the city–the Mission. Now, at this time of year, the Mission becomes famous for hosting a very popular Halloween street party (much like its next-door neighborhood, the Castro). And it just happens to be where Theo Grayson, hero of Blaze Of Winter, is living before he returns to Star Harbor.

Inspired by both my city trip and the Halloween holiday, I wrote a scene from Theo’s point of view that takes place about a month before the beginning of Blaze Of Winter, in the time-frame of Deep Autumn Heat.

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San Francisco

“Ninety-eight, ninety-nine, one hundred.”

Theo Grayson finished his set of crunches and stood up. His large loft seemed emptier than usual, despite the loud laughter and cheering coming from the open window. He walked over to the window overlooking 21st Street. Arms on the sill, he leaned out. Two stories below was a mass of humanity.

The sidewalks were jam-packed with bodies, and people were beginning to spill out onto the street.  It was the same story all the way down to Valencia. Halloween in the Mission was one of the great perks of living in San Francisco. Just one of the many things he’d miss if he were back in Star Harbor.

Though he wouldn’t miss the weather. It was chilly—about fifty-five degrees—but scantily-clad beauties were out in full force. One woman walked by in a glittery push-up bra and some skimpy shorts—a sight he’d never see in Star Harbor this time of year.

“Come on down, honey,” someone yelled. “We want to see the rest of you.” When he saw a buff guy waving madly, Theo realized he was the object of the man’s attention. Some women joined in the fun, hooting and hollering. Theo had forgotten that he wasn’t wearing a shirt. Realizing the way he must look—a big guy with a bare chest…and maybe nothing on underneath—he simply smiled down at the throngs, shook his head, and shut the window.

He gave a heavy sigh. His brother Cole was right—Theo needed to get out of town, return to his roots, and get started on his latest novel.  He wasn’t making any progress by staying in SF.  He’d hit a brick wall, and none of his usual tricks to jumpstart his writing were working.

Even tonight—on Halloween of all nights—he’d chosen to skip a friend’s party because he had a glimmer of an idea for his book. But when he’d sat down to write, the idea had disappeared. He’d been at it for hours before he’d given up and decided to work out. His Jack Sparrow costume hung in his closet, unworn. He’d thought he was so clever—the author of swashbuckling adventure stories dressing as a pirate for Halloween. He’d hoped the costume would provide him with some writing inspiration. Instead, it had just made him depressed that he hadn’t written a sentence. He couldn’t bear to put it on.

Pathetic.

He had thought he was wasting his time in SF. Now, he was certain. He needed to return to Massachusetts. To the crisp autumn air and the gorgeous fall foliage, the briny waters of the Cape and the smell of wood-burning fires. God, he missed it, no more so than when he was alone and feeling sorry for himself. This was the kick in the pants he needed to get back in the right mindset. And now he needed a game plan to get out of SF and back to Star Harbor.

First things first. He’d map out a timeline for his departure, arrange to rent out his apartment, book his flights…the list quickly grew exponentially.

He glanced over at the costume in his closet. Forget about pretend pirates. Soon, he’d be face-to-face with the real thing.

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Let me know what you think of my bonus material and I’ll see what I can dig up for the release of Long Simmering Spring this coming May! I have a few deleted scenes you might enjoy…..

Also, I’m happy to be doing another giveaway! I have two copies of Robyn Carr’s excellent Sunrise Point that I’m giving away to two random commenters. Just leave a comment  below letting me know about a time when you thought about making a change. U.S. entries only, please, since I’ll be shipping books. Also, winners must be members of my mailing list (sign up here). Contest ends October 6 at 9pm Pacific time.

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The contest is over and I have chosen a winner (randomly, using one of those random picker things), and Marie Haney is the lucky winner! Marie will be getting a lot of 2-3 books from my RWA swag bag! Thank to everyone who left a comment, and please stay tuned for more contests!

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As part of the lead-up to the release for Blaze of Winter (Theo’s story) on September 10th, I am thrilled to announce that I will be doing a series of giveaways. I have so much great stuff to send out into the world! It all started when I went to RWA (the Romance Writers of America National Conference), and returned home with a huge bag of swag:

 This ginormous “bag of happiness” is filled to bursting with delicious novels, just waiting to be opened and read, and includes books that span a broad range of genres: historical, paranormal, contemporary, series, women’s fiction, fantasy, and more!!

Okay, okay, I’ll calm down.

*Takes deep breath.*

There. I’ve composed myself. Mostly.

Simply because of sheer volume (there were some books I had to remove just to get a good shot of this beast), I’ll be dividing this beautiful monster up into lots of 2-3 books, probably by genre. If you win, you can tell me what kind of books you like best, and I’ll do my best to accommodate you.

I’ve also got some awesome Loveswept goodies – a few paper ARCs from Loveswept authors (*cough* Ruthie Knox *cough*) and some Loveswept gift cards good for free books! Plus, the latest books from Robyn Carr. You won’t want to miss anything over the next month!

Oh, and if you’re really eager to get your hands on Blaze of Winter early, definitely follow me on my official blog tour, where I’ll be giving away a NetGalley preview copy of the book at almost every stop!

Okay, but for today, I need to figure out to whom I should give the first batch of goodies, which will be a lot of 2-3 books from my RWA swag bag. Since I’ve been on a kindergarten kick (my oldest started last week, and you can read the saga of getting him registered here), why don’t you tell me your most interesting kindergarten experience? For those of us who have trouble remembering our own kindergarten experiences, feel free to share an interesting kindergarten experience of a friend or family member.

Rules:

(1) Winner must be a member of my mailing list. Please sign up for my mailing list here.

(2) In the comments section below, tell me your most interesting kindergarten experience / kindergarten experience of a friend or family member.

(3) One random commenter will be selected.

(4) U.S. only, please! (I’ll be shipping paperbacks).

(5) Contest ends 8/31 at midnight, PDT.

Can’t wait to hear your stories!

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