Nan Reinhardt, Author

Grown-up love stories, because we're never too old for a little sexy romance…
Browsing Liz Flaherty

Holiday Romance with Liz Flaherty

October11

Know what’s great? Having a BFF who is also a romance writer because it means I get first peek at all her books, plus I have someone to process stories with. Someone who really gets it when I’m stuck and thinking I’m the worst writer ever. It’s good to be that person for her, too! Today, I’m celebrating the release of that person’s newest novel. Liz Flaherty’s The Dark Horse: A Christmas Carousel Story is part of the 12 Days of Heartwarming Christmas series of holiday novels and it is a wonderful, touching story.

Liz graciously agreed to share an excerpt:

This isn’t a scene between the hero, Row, and the heroine, Chloe; rather, it’s between Row and his best friend. And it’s pretty close to my favorite. You need to know that there are four foster kids at stake here, two boys and two girls. And remember, this is Christmas Town, where love always finds a way.

Shoe was in Germany. Even though he didn’t remember exactly how many hours the time difference was, Row knew his friend would wake when his phone rang and that he wouldn’t be happy about it.

He wasn’t.

“Unless you’re terminally ill or at the airport needing to be picked up, you have to hang up and call back at a reasonable hour.”

Row laughed. He thought he’d missed Shoe’s James Earl Jones growl as much as he missed the man himself. “Would you have married Tatiana if she hadn’t been in love with you?”

“I’d have married Tatiana if she’d been in love with you.”

“She was, brother. We just didn’t want to tell you.”

Shoe chuckled at the old joke, his voice becoming more wakeful. “I don’t know that she was in love with me or even if I was in love with her then. She had a lot on her plate, being a single mom in medical school. She liked me and I loved her little boy, I had a steady paycheck and a car. I wanted to be Isaac’s dad more than I’d ever wanted anything—even more than I’d wanted to fly Black Hawks. So we got married.”

Row knew, simplified as the telling of the story was, that it was also the truth. He must have asked Shoe a hundred times if he was sure of what he was doing before he’d stood up with him in the Vegas wedding chapel. “What about now?” he asked, although he knew the answer to that one. He just liked hearing it.

“She’s the air that I breathe, man, and these kids? These kids are my reward for becoming a grownup. Did I tell you Isaac is starting on the basketball team here? As a sophomore? His mom is so proud.”

“I know. You’ve told me a dozen times. Too bad you’re not a little proud yourself.”

Shoe yawned hugely. “Now, since people are going to wake me up for church pretty soon, why don’t you tell me why you called so I can sneak in another half hour of sleep?”

Row told him. He talked about Connor and the music in the boy’s soul. He told about Chloe’s face when she sat with a sleeping toddler in her arms. He tried to explain how if felt sitting next to her on the couch or in his car. He said no, no, he wasn’t in love, just seriously in like—and he was worried about the Michaud kids. Big time.

Shoe laughed a lot from the other end, and then he said quietly. “Remember when we’d fly into places we weren’t sure about? We’d say a prayer and go in, because if we just hung there in the air, all we’d do is run out of fuel and get embarrassed when we fell out of the sky. I’ve waited a long time to hear that tone in your voice that Chloe seems to have put there, so go in, Row. Don’t wait to fall out of the sky.”

They ended the call then. Row sat on the loveseat in the guest house’s miniature living room, sipping the beer he’d poured from a growler when he’d come home after helping Chloe carry the little girls back upstairs at her house. He’d kissed her at her front door, held her gaze for a long time, and kissed her again.

It had been a long day and he was exhausted. But enlivened, too. He picked up his phone again and called his father. “Are you disappointed about not being a grandfather?”

Mr. Welcome hesitated. “Yeah, I guess I am. Are you thinking about making me one?” He chuckled, and the sound fell warm on Row’s ear. “I’ll take two of each.”

Liz is a multi-published author with Harlequin, The Wild Rose Press, and Carina Press. She has three grown children, the three they married and brought home to her, and the Magnificent Seven grandchildren who are, you know, magnificent. She and Duane live in the same farmhouse back a lane they’ve been sharing for 40 years and hope to share for…well, probably not another 40, but a long time more. She also hangs out with me–our 3-hour lunches are the stuff legends are made of. She’d love to hear from you at lizkflaherty@gmail.com or please come and see her at http://www.facebook.com/lizkflaherty

 

Wine, Writing & Romance

August29

What’s more fun that doing a book-signing at a winery? Not much. My writing BFF Liz Flaherty and I did just that on Saturday and we had a ball. The good folks at Whyte Horse Winery, in the little lake town where Husband and I have our cottage, opened their doors to us and our readers. We had wine and snacks and books and wine and lemonade and wine and did I mention we had wine? It was wonderful getting to meet readers and answering their questions about writing. Our husbands acted as cashiers while we sold and signed books. Good buddy Maureen was a lovely hostess for us, setting up cookie trays, greeting guests, and inviting them to fill out a slip to win the tote full of goodies we were giving away.

A delightful reader named Terri (she’s the second one from the right on our picture above) won the tote and all fun stuff in it–wine, wineglasses, wine charms, apple butter, apple and wine kitchen towels, earrings, books, a candle . . . lots of cool things for her to remember our event by. It was so fun to see our readers, who were mostly strangers to one another, bond over wine and romance novels. Another big score for love . . . and wine!

All in all, it was a very successful day and Liz and I both appreciated the opportunity to introduce readers to our current books and the new ones we have releasing soon! Not sure when our next event will be, but I’ll keep you posted! Until then, as always, mes amies, remember, hold your face to the sun, be grateful for all things, and love well.

Nan

How Do You Text?

August14

This article from the Wall Street Journal made me smile because Samantha Hayes, the heroine in my new book coming October 29 from Tule Publishing has a “thing” about texting and how people do it. In A SMALL TOWN CHRISTMAS, the fact that Conor Flaherty, the hero, just uses texting for the utility of easy communication–no emojis, correct spelling and punctuation–is simply one more reason for her to fall in love with him!

My writing BFF, Liz Flaherty and I tease each other a lot about our excessive use of exclamation marks when we “chat” on Google each morning–we both do it. But I think we’re only trying to get a point across and show one another how we feel about any given topic. Oh, BTW, Liz’s new book, NICE TO COME HOME TO is available on Amazon and other book retailers.

Enjoy this article from the Wall Street Journal and then leave me a comment about how you feel about punctuation in texting and emails. Me? I’m kind with Sam on the topic, but I’m guilty of overuse of emojis and exclamation marks when I text . . . however, I do try very hard to spell everything correctly and OMG! I don’t use abbreviations like OMG and LOL and CUL8TR, especially not that last one! Ugh! LOL!

Let’s discuss. In the meantime, mes amies, remember, hold your face to the sun, be grateful for all things, and love well.

Nan

Still Rollin’ Along

November16

Liz and Nan’s big Madison adventure continued today, but our adventurousness sorta stayed in the fiction realm. We went to breakfast, then came back to the hotel and set up in the lobby to write. We stayed put there, each of us writing and occasionally stopping to share a paragraph or ask one anothers’ opinion or discuss a word choice. Or even, ask for a word! We ended up skipping lunch and writing from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. It was amazing–I got a fabulous start on novel 1 for Tule and Liz–ta da!! Liz finished her book that is due to Harlequin Heartwarming on December 1!! YAY!

At 4, we closed up shop and headed to town to wander a bit–we needed to walk and breathe fresh cold Indiana air. Then we headed to the Key West Shrimp House for an early fish supper. It’s been a great writing day. Liz is delighted to have put The End to the first draft of Cass’s story and I’m pleased as I can be about the great start I have on Colin’s story. Now, we’re just hanging out in our cozy hotel room–a fire in the fireplace and the gray, gloomy day out of sight and out of mind.

It was good for me to be down here with Liz, writing and keeping my mind occupied. Today would have been my dear Dee’s 62nd birthday. All day, I’ve been thinking of her and remembering when I was down here with her when she turned 55. We had a great time at the Clifty Inn. Man, do I miss her.

But all in all, with the lovely hotel, delightful folks we’ve met, and the successful writing we’ve gotten done, we’re declaring this Writer’s Retreat a complete success! Now, we’ve got to decide where we’ll go next . . . stay tuned!

 

posted under Liz Flaherty, This Life..., Writer's moments | Comments Off on Still Rollin’ Along

Author Event!

August3

I’m so excited to be doing an author panel/book signing with three other fabulous writer on Saturday, August 5. Kathleen Thompson, Liz Flaherty, and Cheryl Brooks and I are going to be there talking about writing romance and taking your questions. Then afterward, we’ll all be available to chat and sign books. If you happen to be in the Logansport, Indiana, area, we’d love to have you stop by the Logansport Library and join us for a lively discussion about writing and publishing and romance.

Wednesday Chipperish Reminder

April12

Lani Diane Rich’s fabulous podcast, JED BARTLET IS MY PRESIDENT, episode 6 is up! I’m headed there right now after getting a great report from the doc at my 6-month checkup–I’m healthy and strong, and my hair is adorable. (Yeah, my doc is a woman, so she notices stuff like that.)

Gratitude for today:

  1. I am healthy and strong and my hair is adorable. 😉
  2. Great time opening the lake cottage–we’re good to go for the summer.
  3. Wonderful to see the lake friends who were there this weekend–can’t wait to see the community all back together again.
  4. Terrific day Sunday with Liz and Duane–sure hope they’re frequent visitors this summer!
  5. Had a fun time at Lake Ladies Lunch–met a new friend–and subbing Bunco, also always a treat.
posted under Chipperish Media, Gratitude, Lake life, Liz Flaherty | Comments Off on Wednesday Chipperish Reminder

Wednesday Chipperish Reminder

March29

It’s Wednesday, folks, and time for another episode of Jed Bartlet Is My President. Given the state of our current administration, a little political fantasy is unquestionably in order, don’t you think? I’m in, how about you? The amazing Dr. Kelly Jones–one of my dear pals from Betty days joins Lani for a discussion of “Six Meetings Before Lunch.” Kelly is delightful and I’m so jacked about her new podcast Southern Fried Scholar. I’m in, how about you?

Also how about some gratitude?

  1. Today, I’m excited about my WIP, which is coming together like magic–the hero and heroine wrote their own love scenes, which made my job so much nicer. Thank you, Tony and Sarah! Only about 20K more words and it’s off to Lani for edits.
  2. Sunshine–gorgeous sunrise this morning and sunshine all over the place today.
  3. Got to talk to Son last night where we processed a knotty issue for him–nothing dramatic, just something he needed to talk through. I’m always glad when he picks me to process with–it’s a Mom thing, I guess.
  4. Coffee, coffee, coffee…you know?
  5. Liz Flaherty, who is a friend who only becomes dearer with each day.
  6. Acorn TV–fun British television. Husband and I are hooked!

That’s it for today–I’m off to listen to JBIMP #4. 😉

 

Spring Is Springing (cross-posted)

March28

Spring seems to be springing already and you know, we really haven’t had much of a winter here. (Those are my grape hyacinths that grow under the dining room window–aren’t they pretty? You can also see that the flowerbeds need to be cleaned out . . . yikes!) Oh, we’ve had few days of snow, but no real accumulation, and a few days of serious cold, but no long stretches of temperatures below freezing. That’s unusual but certainly not unheard of here in the middle of the United States. I remember lots of mild winters. But I think this one is feeling weird because it’s been a weird year. Between body stuff going on—which has been resolved—and an election I can’t fathom and all the unconventional activity in our nation’s capital, everything feels . . . I dunno—unsettled.

I’m not the only one feeling this sea change—Son has mentioned it and I know Husband is aware that this year has been/is different. Liz and I have had endless conversations about life seeming different and sorta uncomfortable right now—like a pair of yoga pants that are a little too snug or socks that keep slipping down. I’m hoping that a trip to see the Grandboy soon will even things out in my head and that opening the lake cottage will bring some sense of normalcy because man, I am ready for just plain normal.

To be very honest I’m also really ready for Lent to be over—I miss my social media. The break has been eye-opening. I never would’ve guessed I was so addicted, but apparently, I am. I’m missing out on a lot of stuff from friends and family and church and writing circles and editor groups. Hopefully, everyone will still remember who I am when I get back after Easter.

I’m so thankful for Liz, who keeps me in the loop—we text or talk or gChat at least once a day, more often most days. We do that anyway whether I’m on social media or not—I need Lizzy like I need air. Dee stays in touch and so does sister PJ and my good buddy, Charlie. But you know what’s really cool? Fellow Word Wrangler Margie has been sending me stuff via snail mail—cards and little notes just to check in—and I want to say here how much I appreciate her care and concern. I don’t know who told her that I love, love to get mail—I always have loved to get mail, but wow! This is so much fun! I’m thinking Margie may have a new pen pal because I love to write letters too. There’s just something special about a pen and pretty paper, don’t you think? I got this one from her yesterday . . . and it’s on the bulletin board above my desk—a sweet reminder that she knows how much I’m missing the contact of social media. Thanks, Margie—you rock, baby!

So here’s the question of the week: Do you like writing letters? Would you go back to pen, stationery, and stamps if you had the opportunity? If so, send somebody a note today. I’m sure it would be much appreciated.

posted under Lake life, Liz Flaherty, This Life... | Comments Off on Spring Is Springing (cross-posted)

Still Here, Still Grateful

November17

Nancy's MI trip 077 whiteriver07These are pictures of the lighthouse at Point Betsie in Frankfort, MI–the town Willow Bay is based on. Remember this lighthouse–it will show up in Sarah’s story and in Libby’s, too–the Women of Willow Bay books currently in progress.

I’m behind, as usual, but with good reasons . . . well, okay, decent excuses. I confess gratitude comes hard after this election because I’m sad and scared. But, sad and scared is no way to live. Neither is angry, so I’m working very hard to remember that I live in a great country. America is already great and we’ve survived this long because of our diversity and creativity and our mutual respect for one another. We can do this. We can. Son and I were talking about how folks have compared this situation with Germany in the late thirties and although, I get why the comparison is being made, I’m not convinced it’s a valid one. First of all, nothing gets hidden in this country thanks to social media, 24-hour news cycles, and cell phones with cameras. Second, our president-elect is not a stupid man–he knows he can’t turn this country on its ear without getting a lot of push-back from the citizens. I pray he finds wise counsel.

Also, Son and I were talking the other day–okay, moaning, but nonetheless, I said that I hope 9/11 showed us that we don’t have to be run over by hatred and craziness. Seriously? Do you think anyone could hijack a plane and fly it into a building in the United States today? I don’t think so. We have locks on cockpit doors now, as well as other safeguards, but also, I don’t think a single passenger would ever let that happen again, even at the risk of their own lives. I wouldn’t. Would you? That’s why I don’t think comparing us to 1930s Germany is fair. The world is different now–in some more dangerous, but in others, better, smarter, more caring.

So, here are seven days worth of gratitude . . .

  1. I’m healthy and strong.
  2. In the same vein (no pun intended), the CT scan showed that my carotid arteries are only 0 to 10% blocked, which is fabulous for a woman my age. Fabulous for anyone really.
  3. My darling daughter-in-law is having a birthday on Saturday–we’re blessed to have her in our lives and we’re thankful for how much she loves Son and what a great mom she is to Grandboy. We love you, baby!
  4. Gertie, the immobilizer boot on my foot, and I are tolerating each other pretty well.
  5. I’m learning to sit still.
  6. The blanket I’m knitting is coming along wonderfully–a picture next time I post, I promise.
  7. Fall has been lovely–warm days and crisp, cool nights.
  8. Husband–just because I’m so lucky to be loved by the most amazing man on the planet.
  9. IRWA Retreat was a fun time of fellowship with other writers.
  10. IRWA Retreat was also a great time with one of my dearest besties–hugs to you, Lizzie! You are the most delightful of traveling companions–I look forward to many more trips together.
  11. I got to know a new writer friend at Retreat–always a pleasure.
  12. The new book is continuing at a merry clip–this weekend, I’ll do a little bit of timeline work and plotting, although I know where I’m going. The trick is not to rush it, but also not get bogged down–it’s a tightrope sometimes!
  13. Son, DIL, and Grandboy are doing well–busy, busy lives, but they’re all good and when they’re good, I’m good.
  14. Dee is out of the hospital and yesterday we celebrated her 61st birthday–something neither of us thought would happen. Right now, I’m holding onto this fact–she’s still here. What a miracle!

Just a bonus: I’m so very thankful for all the dear friends who care about me and my well-being. I saw it clearly yesterday when I had to make several phone calls to let folks know the results of the CT scan. I am a blessed woman.

posted under Gratitude, Liz Flaherty, Musings, The Women of Willow Book, This Life..., Writer's moments | Comments Off on Still Here, Still Grateful

Checking In . . .

October13

21-days. . . with my 21-Day Writing Challenge. It’s Day 10 and I have gotten up every day between 6 and 6:30 a.m. and written for at least one hour. Sometimes I get so involved that I’ve written for an hour and a half without realizing it. I’m surprised I’ve made it halfway through without missing a day–that may not sound like much of accomplishment, but given the chaos of the last couple of years of my life, it’s big stuff. Altogether, I’ve managed to get down 9,625 new words on Sarah’s story–an average of about 800 words each day–which brings the story to a little under 14K words. Given that a month ago, I was telling Lizzy that I was sick to death of the Women of Willow Bay and wanted to write something brand new, I don’t think that’s too shabby.

At first, getting up was hard–as I said before Husband is warm and cuddly and it’s still dark at 6:30 in the morning, but today was a milestone because I wanted to get up. I woke up thinking about the story and where I was headed next and making a mental list of some things I want to research when I take a break from work later on this afternoon. Could this be the beginning of a new habit? Who knows? But I remain hopeful. 😉

bob-dylanIn other news, congratulations to Bob Dylan for winning a Nobel Prize in Literature for his body of songwriting. That’s pretty cool. He’s only the second American to win a Nobel Prize for Literature–Toni Morrison was the other in 1993.

I got to Skype with my boys last night, which always brings me no end of joy–they both seemed happy and healthy and we giggled while Grandboy pulled out the contents of a goodie bag he’d gotten a birthday party at school. I love how four-year-olds are delighted over the smallest things. I think I need to work at being more easily delighted. Maybe we all should.

lawsThing that are delighting me today: New plantation blinds throughout the entire lake cottage–they look amazing! Dinner last night with Rich and Moe–good food and great fellowship. The sky is October blue this morning after yesterday’s rain and the air is crisp and very cool so I’ll get to wear a sweatshirt all day–nice! We’ve had fresh pears the last three mornings and they’re perfect and delicious. Right now, pears are my favorite treat.

posted under Gratitude, Liz Flaherty, The Women of Willow Book, This Life..., Writer's moments | Comments Off on Checking In . . .
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