Nan Reinhardt, Author

Grown-up love stories, because we're never too old for a little sexy romance…
Browsing Writer’s moments

Writing Retreat Day 2

February19



We are in our second day of writing retreat and we think we deserve great thumps of “good job, girls” on our backs. Because we have written, yes, and also because between the two of us, we’ve only bought one pound of fudge and two bottles of wine. No clothes. No sweatshirts proclaiming our whereabouts. We’ve eaten well—we always eat well—talked about everything from character development to eye shadow colors (neutrals work—who knew?), and slept well on the beds in the boutique hotel where we ended up staying.

I am homesick, of course. It happens every time. Nan rolls her eyes when I admit it, but then she calls Jim, so what does she know?

Strictly from a writing point of view, I can’t say enough about the value of a writing retreat. While it’s true it’s fun to spend good-friend time, having someone talk you off the ledge when you absolutely know the book you’re writing is a piece of crap less than stellar is priceless.

We’ve discovered over the years that we are absolutely splendid at naming each other’s characters, that she can beat me at Farkle, and that we share an affinity for fuzzy socks. We have a good time and the annual or biennial getaway days serve to deepen the friendship.

It’s a time for dialing down whatever has us being stressed and dialing up things that make us laugh. While a writing retreat is a valuable tool for getting work done, it’s even more important in its curative treatment of mental health issues.

Good to talk to everyone. Hope you’re having a great week.

Liz, feeling mentally healthy as all get out. 😊



Writing Retreat Day 1

February18

It’s a little before 8 p.m. and Lizzie and I are already settled in our cozy room and we’ve both written a good bit since we checked in around 3 p.m. It’s been a nutty day. Right off, it is cold! Like winter serious cold!

Our reservations were at a state park inn and we couldn’t check in until 4 pm, so we had lunch at this fabulous restaurant here in Nashville, IN — just fantastic food! An amazing cream of chicken soup with spinach and artichokes. Man was that ever tasty! The restaurant is part of an inn here in the heart of town–The Artists Colony Inn. It’s very pretty.

While we were eating, we got a message from the state park inn telling us, we thought, that the heat was out in the hotel. We checked with desk clerk at the Artists Colony and got a price for a room just in case the heat didn’t get fixed by the time we checked in at the state park. As it happened, we misunderstood and the heat was out in the pool, not the whole inn, but the inn was overrun with kids, literally! Not sure why so many kids were there, but honestly, we couldn’t see how we could possibly write there. So we decided not to stay and instead made our way back to The Artists Colony and checked in.

This is a lovely place–our room is charming with quilts on the beds and lots of fun antique-y style furniture. We’ve settled in nicely, opened the wine we bought at Cedar Creek winery earlier in the day and are bouncing ideas off each other as we write. A perfect beginning to the writing retreat.

I’ve gotten a good start on Aidan’s story–used a fun device that I hope will work at the beginning. Not sure yet, but the story’s already moving along. Liz is doing great on her story, too. We’re kickin’ it! Hold a good thought for both of us. More tomorrow.

Retreat!

February17

It’s Sunday morning and I’m still covered up with work, but I can see the light at the top of the heap finally. I’ve been focusing on editing gigs and packing up the house, so I haven’t written a word on Aidan’s book yet. However, I’m in full discovery mode and have even written a synopsis for the story, so I’m already ahead of the game on the book. Now it’s just down to writing, which will begin tomorrow when Liz and I get to our retreat.

I can’t wait for our retreat time–I think we both need the girlfriend time, the writer buddy time, and the away time. I always write well on retreat, so I’m hoping this one is no exception. I’m looking for my muses for this book–Aidan Flaherty is a blond, and not as brawny as his brothers–more arty and lithe, but sexy and very fit because he plays a cop on TV. I’m thinking maybe Max Lloyd-Jones. He’s got my Aidan vibe–sexy, but friendly… hot, but approachable and fun… how about this guy? Max Lloyd-Jones? He’s pretty much got my vote.

For Holly, I was a little stumped until I came across this Australian actress, Adelaide Kane. She’s got the look I’m going for–innocent, yet wise and a little cynical. She’s had a rough start and is a little envious of what appears to her to be Aidan’s dumb luck.

So, here are my new characters–hold a good thought for the story, which will be a Christmas book and even includes a young boy, who will be the catalyst for Aidan and Holly’s story.

Liz and I will blog our retreat here, but don’t get too excited–we tend to mostly write on these shorter adventures, so there may not be too much to report. Hold a good thought for decent weather and safe roads, okay?

As always, mes amies, remember to hold your face to the sun, be grateful for all things, and love well.

~Nan~

A Sexy New Novella from Mellanie Szereto

February8

Flavor of the Day

A taste for something sexy…

Roma Denata prefers spending her time inventing new flavors at her gelato shop and scratching her sexual itch on the run. Unfortunately, her annoying new landlord is a rash that won’t go away, no matter how often they take their clashes to an unexpected level. And more than her Italian temper reaches the boiling point.

A temporary return to his hometown forces Lucas Calloway to rethink his reasons for avoiding emotional ties. His tenant makes him want more than a daily dose of sleeping with the enemy, and revealing his own disturbing secret is the perfect way to convince her to share hers.

Guilt has destroyed Roma’s appetite for love and trust seems beyond her ability—even when Lucas’s revelation uncovers a common bond. Melting her heart is a challenge he must accept, but the collateral damage inflicted from events of the past may be too much to overcome.

Links:
Amazon| Apple Books | B&N | Google Play | Kobo

Excerpt:

I wonder if Mr. Landlord knows he’s stuck with me yet. The knowledge that Calloway was probably scrambling in his wingtips for a nonexistent loophole rejuvenated Roma as much as the post-sex nap.
     She stretched as she stood, confident she could easily smack the smugness off Lucas’s face with a cup of lemon gelato if he ever called her short stuff again. While she didn’t like wasting her tasty creations, it would fit his sour disposition perfectly.
     The smell of fresh waffle cones lured her to the service counter. A horde of noisy miniature soccer players crowded through the entrance as she washed and dried her hands. “Who won today?”
     The tallest of the under-ten mob smirked at her from beyond the step-up shelf. He was usually the loudest and the first to brag about his exploits on the field. “We did. I’d like a—”
     “Hold on.” She wielded a scoop and smirked right back at him. “Swing the end of the line over here to the counter. I’m playing my reverse card today. And quiet earns you an extra scoop of vanilla or chocolate.”
     A raucous cheer echoed off the walls and then silenced almost as quickly as the kids lined up through the tables curved around to the freezer case.
     “That’s not fair. You’re our sponsor.” The boy at the former head of the line frowned and crossed his arms at his chest.
     “My mood, my rules. It’s not like I’m going to run out even if you all order the same flavor. Besides, we already won the game. No need to be jerks by rubbing their noses in it.”
     He shrugged and sighed, clearly not happy with her reasoning.
     Less than ten minutes later, she handed him a waffle bowl with two scoops of chocolate “Thanks, I guess.”
     “You’re welcome, I guess.” She shared an eye roll with his coach at the grudging thanks before a scene on the sidewalk grabbed her interest.
     Glenn Frasier stood with his back partway to her in a pair of checked shorts and an orange golf shirt. Her nemesis wore the same bad-boy attitude he’d had on since the day she’d first crossed paths with him. The older man appeared to laugh at something his nephew said and Lucas jabbed his finger toward the shop.
     “Ooh, somebody looks ticked off.” Tess’s observation was likely an understatement. “It wouldn’t have anything to do with that envelope you took next door earlier, would it?”
     “I hope so.” Roma met her adversary’s glare through the window and waved. Serves you right for being an ass. “That was my intent after all.”
     He stormed toward the door, but Glenn caught him by the elbow. More pointing and one-sided discussion ensued before the old man dragged his nephew out of sight.
     Good riddance to egotistical trash.
     “Here’s the register tape from the soccer invasion.” Tess chuckled as she leaned in. “He’s the guy, isn’t he? Definite biker vibe and kinda hot for not being my type.”

When her fingers aren’t attached to her keyboard, Mellanie Szereto enjoys hiking, Pilates, cooking, gardening, and researching for her stories. Many times, the research partners with her other hobbies, taking her from the Hocking Hills region in Ohio to the Colorado Rockies and the Adirondacks of New York. Sometimes, the trip is no farther than her garden for ingredients and her kitchen to test recipes for her latest steamy tale. Mellanie makes her home in rural Indiana with her husband of thirty-two years and their son. She is a 2016 recipient of the RWA Service Award, RWA Chapter Advisor, and a member of Romance Writers of America, Indiana Romance Writers of America, Contemporary Romance Writers, and FF&P Romance Writers.
She greatly appreciates reviews and loves to hear from her readers! Contact Mellanie at mellanie@mellanieszereto.com.

Writer or Author

February3

When people ask me what I do, my answer sometimes depends on how and why they ask the question. If it’s a random, we-just-met-at-an-event kind of query, I choose my answer based on how involved I want to get in the conversation. I know how bitchy that sounds, but sometimes, you just don’t want to have a long conversation with someone you know for certain is going to immediately chortle when you tell them you’re a romance writer. So those folks get “I’m a freelance copy editor.” Then the conversation can steer toward “Oh, I bet that’s interesting,” rather than a smirking “Really? Like 50 Shades? Heh, heh.” Yeesh…

Sometimes they ask, “What do you do for a living?” That’s easy, I’m a freelance copy editor for a living. I don’t earn enough from book sales to consider it a living, although I’m closer now than I was a few years ago. I can’t give up the editing gigs just yet, and even if I could, I’m not sure I’d would. I love editing almost as much as I love writing.

Then there’s the dilemma of telling someone I’m a writer versus telling them I’m an author. I’ve always differentiated writer from author–my delineation being whether or not I was published. A writer writes. An author writes and sells books, but she also markets and promotes and suffers mightily over rankings on Amazon and making lists such as the USA Today or NY Times bestseller list. So, based on that criteria, either one works for me at this point. However, before I started this article, I looked up both words and guess what! Webster doesn’t differentiate between a writer and an author.

A writer is “one who writes.” An author is “one who originates or creates; a writer of a literary work, such as a book.” So am I the only writer who didn’t consider herself an author until her first book was published? And what was it about being indie published that made me doubt my own authority as an author? (See what I did there? A little word play, tee hee.) Why did I not truly feel like an author until I had a 4-book deal with a traditional publisher? If all I ever wrote were articles on this blog, would I be any less an author than the writers who write and sell millions of books? That’s my question for the universe today–how do you define yourself–writer or author? Does it even matter?

As always, mes amies, remember to hold your face to the sun, be grateful for all things, and love well.

~Nan~

BookBub Day!

January19

Hey, kids! It’s my BookBub Day! I’m so excited about this feature ad on BookBub! Check it out! I’m holding a good thought that this special price on The Summer of Second Chances, book 3 in the Women of Willow Bay series will spark enough interest that all four books will rocket to the top of the e-book charts.

So if you would pass the word, I’d sure appreciate it, and if you haven’t read any of my Women of Willow Bay books and you enjoy a good romantic suspense story, well, this is a great place to start!

posted under The Women of Willow Book, Writer's moments | Comments Off on BookBub Day!

Happy New Year!

January1

I’m writing this post on December 30 because I won’t be near my computer on January 1, 2019. I’ll be celebrating the new year with dear friends and hopefully, being pretty much electronics-free. But I didn’t want to miss a chance to start the new year with my best wishes to all my followers and readers for a joyful and peaceful and successful 2019.

It’s been a rough few years for all of us, especially 2018, with the chaos in the country and life feeling so out of our control. My prayer for the country, for my loved ones, and for me is that we chill out. Stop and breathe. Take time to be grateful to be living in a time when every day is a miracle. Slow down. Live each moment because they’re never coming again.

2019 will bring big changes for me and mine and it may for you as well. I plan to enjoy all the new challenges that are coming up, cherish my family and friends and try to see the changes as adventures to be relished, not mountains to be overcome.

I’ll be writing at least two more books in 2019, continuing the Four Irish Brothers Winery series for Tule Publishing, continuing to blog here and Word Wranglers and wherever else I’m welcome, and I’ll be editing to earn my keep.

So all that said, I’m starting 2019 with a gratitude list because I believe firmly that being grateful is the key to happiness. As the new year begins, I’m thankful for my family–my kids, dear Husband, my sister, my brother, and all the others who are in my extended family. I’m grateful for my friends–my besties who keep me sane and writing and on track and who listen graciously and always have my back. I’m glad for the technology that allows me to work and earn money. I’m thankful for Tule Publishing, who took a chance on me and continues to believe in my writing. I’m thankful for my home and for the new home that’s coming up for us in the new year.

Happy New Year to one and all and as always, mes amies, remember to hold your face to the sun, be grateful for all things, and love well.

~Nan

posted under This Life..., Tule Publishing, Uncategorized, Writer's moments | Comments Off on Happy New Year!

Merry Christmas

December24

It’s a particularly blessed holiday for this writer/editor. So many wonderful things are happening right now, not the least of which is the incredibly warm reception my newest novel, A SMALL TOWN CHRISTMAS, has received. I’m so grateful to all my faithful readers and excited to welcome all the new readers who’ve come on board with this new series. 2019 will bring two more Four Irish Brothers Winery stories, so stay tuned.

Wishing you all a very Merry Christmas and the happiest of New Years.
And as always, mes amies, remember to hold your face to the sun, be grateful for all things, and love well.

~Nan~

posted under Four Irish Brothers Winery, This Life..., Tule Publishing, Writer's moments | Comments Off on Merry Christmas

Holiday Giveaway

December20

It’s the holidays! Time for lights and decorations and singing and great food and wine and gifts! Oh, and speaking of gifts, how about a little holiday giveaway? I’d love to give away three e-copies of my new holiday romance–A SMALL TOWN CHRISTMAS. 

Here’s all you need to do for a chance to win an e-copy of the book–just comment below and tell me your favorite kind of holiday treat. I’ll pick 3 winners at random from the Comments section and announce the names Monday morning (December 24) here on this post and on my Facebook page, so be sure to check back!**

Note: Comments are moderated, so yours may not show up immediately, but it will be there as I check and approve comments throughout the day.

So…come join in the fun and tell me what you love to eat at Christmas! I’ll start–I love mince pie!

**Giveaway Rules: No purchase necessary. Open to entries from Thursday, December 20 to Monday, December 24 at 6 am EST. Must be 18 or older to enter. Winners are chosen at random and gifts will be e-mailed to winners on December 24, 2018. Odds of winning are determined by the number of entries. Void where prohibited.

Melissa McClone Has a New Christmas Romance and a Giveaway!

December12

I’m so happy to welcome author pal, Melissa McClone today! With a degree in mechanical engineering from Stanford University, Melissa McClone worked for a major airline where she traveled the globe and met her husband. But analyzing jet engine performance couldn’t compete with her love of writing happily-ever-afters. She’s now a USA Today Bestselling author and has also been nominated for Romance Writers of America’s RITA® award. Melissa lives in the Pacific Northwest with her husband, three children, two spoiled Norwegian Elkhounds and cats who think they rule the house. They do!

Christmas romances are my very favorite romance novels. What’s yours? Tell me your favorite kind of romance to read in the comment section to be entered to win a $10 Amazon gift card (sent via email).  I’ll pick a winner at random from the Comments section and announce the name Monday morning (December 17) here on this post and on my Facebook page, so be sure to check back! The winner must contact me by Monday, December 21 to claim their prize, so please check back to see if you won.**

Note: Comments are moderated, so yours may not show up immediately, but it will be there as I check comments throughout the day.

Here’s the blurb for The Christmas Window:

A matchmaking aunt wants her nephew to find love under the mistletoe…

All doggy daycare owner Callie Andrews wants for Christmas is to win first prize this year. The annual window display competition is a huge event in Silver Falls, and she’s determined to showcase her success when her family visits her small town. It’s time for her parents and three older brothers to realize the “baby” of the family is thriving on her own.

The last thing Brandt Winslow wants to do is rehash the past, but returning home to Silver Falls means confronting the reason he left. His vacation, however, takes an unexpected turn when his well-meaning aunt meddles in his love life, and he finds himself caught up in her misguided efforts at matchmaking.

Despite their reluctance at being paired up, Callie and Brandt discover the holidays are full of surprises…and romance. But is the magic of Christmas strong enough to keep the couple together through the new year?

Tule Bookstore | Amazon | B&N Nook | Apple Books | Kobo | Google Play

Connect with Melissa through all the usual social media outlets!

Website | Facebook | Twitter | Instagram

EXCERPT:

December might be six days away, but Silver Falls was ready for Christmas with fresh garland strung across First Avenue, streetlights decorated like candy canes, and twinkling lights, well, everywhere. The scents of pine and cedar hung on the air. The dusting of snow resembled pixie dust, another reminder of the magic of the season.

As Callie Andrews walked toward Wags and Tails, her doggy daycare, warmth flowed through her despite the freezing temperature on this overcast Monday morning. She loved how her small town celebrated the holidays. Loved the Christmas traditions of the First Avenue Business Association. Loved the nonstop cheer that overflowed from Thanksgiving to December twenty-fifth.

Who was she kidding?

She loved everything about this place.

Silver Falls was home.

Moving here and buying a business were the best decisions she’d made. This year would mark her third December in Silver Falls. She wanted to make the most of the holidays, especially with her family coming to visit. This Christmas would be perfect. Especially if her plans—updated last night on the flight home after spending Thanksgiving with her family in Los Angeles—worked out.

Why wouldn’t they?

Up ahead, a blue compact SUV parked in front of Tea Leaves & Coffee Beans, the only coffee shop in town. Raine Hanover—owner and barista extraordinaire—slid from the driver’s seat, opened the hatchback, and removed a large wreath.

“Good morning.” Callie stopped in front of the coffee shop’s window display of potted poinsettias, large bags of coffee beans painted with Norman Rockwell-type Christmas images, and twinkling white lights. “I hope you had a good Thanksgiving.”

“It was great, though I need to lose ten pounds after eating too many slices of pumpkin pie smothered in whipped cream.” Raine shut the hatch. “Thank goodness for leggings. No way could I zip my jeans this morning.”

“I know the feeling.”

A man wearing black sweats, a gray hoodie, and tennis shoes crossed the street toward them. He couldn’t be out for a morning run. Not without a hat and gloves. Must not be from around here.

He stepped onto the curb, giving Callie a full view of his face. Her jaw nearly dropped. He was gorgeous.

Her stomach fluttered.

Raine inhaled sharply. She must have noticed, too.

“Good morning.” His light brown hair was carelessly styled, almost as if he’d crawled out of bed and used his fingers as a comb.

Callie double-checked to make sure she wasn’t drooling. His stubble was sexy. Glasses gave him a nerdy vibe, but did nothing to dull his vibrant eyes. Drowning in those pools of blue would be so easy to do, but what a way to go.

**Giveaway Rules: No purchase necessary. Open to entries from Wednesday December 12 to Monday, December 17 at 6 am EST. Must be 18 or older to enter. Winner is chosen at random and must claim their prize by 12/21/18. Odds of winning are determined by the number of entries. Not responsible for loss or damage during shipping. Unclaimed prizes will be given away at a later date, either here on the website or on my Facebook page. Void where prohibited.

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