Thursday, July 26, 2012

Author Liz Grace Davis: Finding Happiness

Author Liz Grace Davis: Finding Happiness: Everyone wants to be happy. I do. You do too, I'm sure. But often it feels as if the more we want to be happy, the more happiness distance...

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

New Blog: Please Follow

Author Liz Grace Davis: Changes: After two years of having one blog, Novel Moments , which featured both moments in my life and also the works of other authors, I've decided to create a new blog...

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Home Fires Blog Tour: Interview & Giveaway

Today I would like to introduce you to Jana Richards, author of Home Fires. She has come to tell us more about herself and her novel. Welcome to Novel Moments, Jana.
Tell us a bit about yourself.
I live on the Canadian prairies and I’ve loved reading romance novels for many years. I like most sub-genres of romance, but I’ve got a soft spot for reading and writing romantic suspense and romantic comedy. But then again, I like historical and contemporaries! I enjoy characters with a quick wit and a sense of humor. Unless they’re in the middle of a war and not feeling particularly witty. Then I want characters with a take charge attitude. “Home Fires” is my 8th publication. You can check out my books at my website at

What keeps you writing?
The desire to tell the stories that rattle around in my brain! I also want to grow as a writer, to write in areas I’ve never written in before and to get better with each book. The desire to write books that connect with people is a huge motivation that keeps me going.

Can you tell us a little more about your novel?
Home Fires is about Anne Wakefield, a young British woman who travels to Canada after the end of World War Two to marry her fiancé, a handsome Canadian pilot she met in London. But when she arrives at his hometown on the Canadian Prairies, she discovers he’s married someone else! She thinks her only course of action is to return to England. Her ex-fiance’s mother has another idea – marry her other son. Erik Gustafson was badly wounded and scarred during the war, and doesn’t believe a beautiful woman like Anne would want him. But Anne sees past his scars to the man beneath, and falls in love. Erik, however, can’t get over the fact that she was engaged to his brother. Is he merely her second choice? It will take all Anne’s courage to convince Erik that she loves him best, and forever.

What inspired you to write this novel?
I’ve been fascinated with the human stories of World War Two for a long time, and in the stories of War Brides in particular. Some 48,000 women (mostly British but some from France, Belgium, The Netherlands and Germany) married Canadian servicemen and came to Canada after the war. Most of these unions were remarkably successful and long lasting, even though the couples met under the stressful times of the war, and in a lot of cases didn’t know each other for very long before they married. Some of the marriages, like Anne’s, were over before they really began. However the marriages turned out, I’ve always been amazed at the courage and determination of these women to leave everything they’ve known to marry the men they loved.

How did you come up with the title?
It comes from a World War One song “Keep the home fires burning”, also known as “Till the Boys come Home”. The song encourages those remaining on the home front to stay strong, so that their loved ones have a home to come back to when war is over.

How long did it take you to research and write the novel?
I’ve been thinking about this story for a long time, but I think it took me about six or seven months from the time I began researching and writing until it contracted for publication.

Is there a certain message you would like readers to get out of this novel?
I guess I’d like people to be aware of the tremendous sacrifices and courage of the World War Two generation. Young men barely out of their teens fought and died to protect their homes and families. Even if they survived the war, many were left with scars, both external and internal. Even those left at home didn’t escape the carnage. Many lost fathers, brothers, husbands, sons. Lives were changed all over the world.

Do you experience writer’s block? How do you deal with it?
There are times when I’m not sure which direction a story should take, or what a character should do. That usually means I don’t know my characters and my story well enough. I need to take a step back to really connect with my character. Maybe I need to ‘interview’ him to find out what he really wants. When I get to the point when I really know my character, it’s much easier to figure out what they would do in any given situation.

Are you a full time writer? If not, how do you make time to write?
I work part-time at a day job, so I also work part-time at writing. I write on days off and on weekends, and some evening. My favorite thing is to set aside a chunk of time, possibly a weekend or longer, and go away somewhere so I can devote the entire time to writing. These retreats are a lot of fun and are very productive, but unfortunately they don’t happen often enough.

What does your daily writing schedule look like?
It depends on the day. On days that I’m home, I’ll walk the dog first thing in the morning and then sit down at my computer for a couple of hours. After lunch I’ll go at it again until around four o’clock. By that time, I’m usually mentally exhausted and desperately in need of some exercise.

What does your marketing schedule look like?
I’m afraid my marketing schedule is a bit chaotic and not totally organized. When I’ve got a new book coming out, I put things into high gear with blog tours like the one I’m currently on now. In between books, I blog at my own site, I do a little posting on Facebook, participate at events at review sites, and do a little guest blogging. I know there’s still a lot more I could be doing, like Goodreads and Twitter. Someday I hope to move into those areas as well.

Which avenues do you use to market your books?
Most of my marketing is on the Internet and since I like blogging, most of my efforts are focused in that direction.

What books can we expect from you in the future?
I am currently working on a series of light hearted romantic comedies I call “Left at the Altar’. Each book begins with someone being dumped at their wedding. But it usually turns out to be the best thing that could happen to them. With any luck this series will find a home!

What was your best ever moment as a published author?
Probably when my editor Jude Glad from Uncial Press accepted my first novel for publication, “Her Best Man”. While I was working on edits on this novel, she told me I was a ‘real’ writer because I took the time to really improve the story, something real writers do. I’ve never forgotten that and it remains my best moment as a writer so far.

Do you have a message for your readers?
I’m having a special promotion between July 4 and July 18. If you buy a copy of “Home Fires” or any of my other titles, you will receive a PDF copy of my romantic comedy “Rescue Me” as a bonus gift. All you have to do is email me at with the receipt number of your purchase and I’ll send you the book. It’s just that simple! You can find a listing of my titles at  To read a blurb and excerpt from “Rescue Me” please click here.

And if you’re interested in the $25 Amazon gift certificate that I’m giving away at the end of this blog tour, please leave a comment or a question for me. I’d love to talk to you! I’ll be randomly choosing the winner of the GC from all comments received on the tour. Please go to for a complete schedule. To receive bonus entries for the GC, like me on Facebook, follow my blog at  or sign up for my newsletter and then email me at to let me know. Winner of the gift certificate will be notified by July 15 and their name will be printed on my Contests page. Thanks so much for your support!

Thank you so much for telling us a little more about you and your novel. I appreciate it.

by Jana Richards


Anne Wakefield travels halfway around the world for love. But when she arrives in Canada from England at the end of World War Two, she discovers the handsome Canadian pilot she’d fallen in love with has married someone else. Heartbroken, she prepares to return to London, though she has nothing left there to return to. Her former fiancé’s mother makes a suggestion: marriage to her other son.
Badly wounded and scarred during the war, Erik Gustafson thinks he’s a poor substitute for his brother. Although he loves Anne almost from the first time he sees her, he cannot believe she would ever be able to love him as he is – especially as he might be after another operation on his bad leg.  Anne sees the beauty of his heart.The cold prairie winter may test her courage, but can she prove to Erik that her love for him is real?


She whirled around to glare at him, her eyes blazing. “No! I’m not a child! I don’t have to be molly-coddled and baby-sat. I spent six years in a war zone, hiding in bomb shelters, never having enough to eat. I worked in a hospital treating blitz victims with wounds so horrendous grown men would gag to look at them. I faced those horrors every day. Sometimes things were so bad I thought I couldn’t go on. But I did. Because I had to. And I’ll face things here too. So don’t tell me to give up because I won’t!”

Erik pushed himself out of his chair to face her, awed by her spirit and courage. She lifted her chin as if defying him to contradict her, her hands clenched at her sides. Her dark hair curled in wild abandon as it dried, framing her pale oval face like a halo. Her beauty and ferocity were magnificent.

“I think you’re the strongest woman I know.”

Her eyes widened in surprise, her hands unclenching. He caught the quiver of her chin as she fought to hold back tears. 

He opened his arms and she stepped into them, wrapping her arms around his waist and clinging to him. He held her tightly, inhaling the sweet, clean scent of her, never wanting to let her go.  
“Don’t cry. Everything’s all right now.” 

She lifted her head to look into his face, her dark eyes shiny with tears, her lips slightly parted. Erik stared at her mouth, wanting desperately to kiss her, to capture her sweetness. He slowly lowered his mouth to hers. To his surprise, she didn’t run off, or turn away in revulsion. He was so close her breath mingled with his, her breathing swallow and erratic. His heart slammed against his chest, his body thrumming with need. For the first time in over three years, he felt alive.

Jana Richards has tried her hand at many writing projects over the years, from magazine articles and short stories to full-length paranormal suspense and romantic comedy.  She loves to create characters with a sense of humor, but also a serious side.  She believes there’s nothing more interesting then peeling back the layers of a character to see what makes them tick.
When not writing up a storm, working at her day job as an Office Administrator, or dealing with ever present mountains of laundry, Jana can be found on the local golf course pursuing her newest hobby.
Jana lives in Western Canada with her husband Warren, and a highly spoiled Pug/Terrier cross named Lou. You can reach her through her website at


Jana will award a $25 Amazon GC to one randomly drawn commenter during the tour.

Please follow the tour and comment; the more you comment, the better your chances of winning. The tour dates can be found here:

Friday, July 6, 2012

My Good News, Cover Reveals, And Angels

When was the last time you took a moment to appreciate all the wonderful things around you and to be grateful?

 For me, it was a few minutes ago after berating myself about not having done enough of the things I wanted to accomplish this week. Three of those tasks were related to writing. I wanted to write at least 2,000 words toward the sequel to Tangi's Teardrops (yes, I've decided to do it because so many people are asking for one). I only wrote 900. I wanted to editing at least 50 pages of Honeysuckle and Jasmine, my next novel to be published in Autumn. I edited only 30.  I wanted to design at least two sample covers. I only managed to design one.But that okay. To make myself feel better I listed the things I did accomplish not only this week but in the past months.

I published two novels within six months
I'm done writing Honeysuckle & Jasmine and just need to edit
I taught myself how to design covers
I'm almost done with my masters studies

Looking at it from that angle, I've accomplished a lot.

This post is just to remind myself to take a moment to be thankful and to relax and enjoy the lovely summer. You know what I love most about summer? Cherries and Watermelon. I just can't get enough.
Copyright (c) <a href=''>123RF Stock Photos</a>

Copyright (c) <a href=''>123RF Stock Photos</a>

 Now for updates from my life. On Monday Sherry Gloag told you a bit about her "week in an author's life". Today, since I haven't updated you on my writing life for a while, I'll tell you what has been happening.

Firstly, on the 21st of June the only english bookstore (Shakespeare & Co.) in Vienna hosted a book reading/signing event for me. It was amazing. Everything about it. That night I really felt like an author. I sold over thirty books and the bookstore bought some to put on the shelves (a huge milestone).
A woman from a public library in Vienna also attended the book reading and bought copies for the library. She also recently finished reading Tangi's Teardrops and she loved it so much she offered to translate it for me into German (no cost). I was incredibly touched. I still am. I think my German is good enough but I wouldn't dare translate my novels myself.

Okay, let's move on to the photos. Click to enlarge.

Showing off which of my books they bought:-)
My novels for sale in the store (ignore the glass left over from the celebration:-)
Now that we're done with the book reading let's move on. A few weeks ago I designed the cover of my next novel, Honeysuckle and Jasmine (women's fiction). I've been meaning to show you but I just didn't get to it. Here it is below. What do you think? I'll still tweak it a bit before it's final. I'll post the blurb soon.

Lastly, two days ago I designed another sample cover and I just love it. I feel so refreshed just looking at it.

I think it's a nice cooling way to end today's post. Don't you think? To see more of my cover design samples or to hire me click HERE.

I wish you all a lovely day. Don't forget to pause, to appreciate life, and to be thankful for where you are right now.

Monday, July 2, 2012

Sherry Gloag: A Week In An Author's Life

Today I would like to introduce to you, Sherry Gloag, the author of The Gasquet Princes Series. I love reading about authors’ typical days and so I asked Sherry to tell us about her typical week. Welcome, Sherry, and thank you for being here today.

First, thank you for inviting me to guest on your blog today.

I’d love to be able to tell you I’m some kind of wonder-woman who can do ten thousand things at once and all of them perfectly.  Nice dream; or perhaps nightmare.  Think of trying to main such high standards ad-infinitum?  Urgh!

So what’s the reality? Nothing like the dream, that’s for sure. J
 My average day starts with my wonderful DH bringing me a cup of tea in bed.  For some it is coffee, for me it’s tea. I can’t start the day without a cup of tea.

Do I have a ‘Tinkerbell’ fairy to do my housework for me?  Absolutely not!  So I try to get that out of the way before I sit at the computer.  Otherwise the housework would not get a look in.

The days of chasing kids out the door in time for the school bus are past, but somehow, and I have not discovered how, yet, the time I should gain from that always seems to disappear. When I do get to the PC, I prefer a PC to a laptop, although I do have one, fortunately, as a backup in times of crashes and the like.  I mean, if I didn’t, last summer I would have been in such big trouble when my PC went AWOL, and the –euphemistically named repair company took more than nine weeks to ensure the machine never worked again!  I mean, this may not be a typical part of a writer’s life, thankfully, but it happens, and it proves a writer must keep regular backups of their work.  On that occasion I lost 24 hours worth of work because the machine crashed just before the daily scheduled backup took place.
Another thing I occasionally do is to email my work to myself.  If, as in this case I had to start over with a new machine some of that 24 hours worth of work was still available to me.

Emails.  I love getting emails, especially from readers and friends.  Since I first began dipping mu toe in the online writing world I have met some fabulous writer friends.  People who are so generous with their time, their advice and help and support.

Blogs, both my own and commitments for others generally comes next.  Since I tend to forget about time (I mean where has this year gone so far, already?  There’s only twenty days left until the longest day of the year!) I can’t say I spend ‘x’ amount of time on the PC dealing with all the different online commitments.  Slowly, very slowly I’m getting my head round FB and the likes and still working out how to remember there are others things to do! 

Shopping ranks up there with housework, but my craftwork and hobbies are always calling for my attention, and like writing I find my craftwork very therapeutic.  In fact, given I get so wrapped up in the emotions of my characters, my crystal work is far more therapeutic, as is my gardening!  And with a hosepipe ban in place right now that adds to the work load of keeping the garden watered.

Organisation is not my forte, which is why I never make New Year’s resolutions. I make lists.  Thankfully, I’m not yet at the stage where I make lists of lists.

I do stop for meals, when I remember, or when DH reminds me he/we both need to ‘e-a-t’.

I usually spend the evenings on my writing, writing.

While for many, this routine may seem tepid at best and monotonous at worst, I kinda enjoy it after the rat-race of running our own business for near two decades. I no longer have those endless commitments and daily schedules to customers and business contacts.  Also I am becoming mildly agoraphobic, so I have to take time out to try ensure that does not take over my life. Yes writing means commitment and schedules, but I can set my own, change them to suit me and my family and expand them when required.
I can’t claim to be an organised sort of person, so tweaking my routine from day-to-day, week-to-week, is not a problem for me.  There are days I’ll spend several hours on my WIP, work in progress, and on occasions I may go a couple of days writing little or nothing at all.

I suppose some would accuse me of living life vicariously through my characters, and in a small part they may be right, I do become totally wrapped up in them when the writing is flowing, and woe betide the idiot who interrupts. :-)  During these times family and friends have come to accept they are not at the top of my personal pecking order. But equally there are times when I make them my priority and set my writing aside for them.

I read for pleasure and reviewing.  Since becoming a published author my reading perspective has changed.  I’m more analytical, which is both good and bad.  I learn so much more than I used to when I simply read for pleasure, and it is harder to simply read for pleasure anymore because the analytical mind jumps right in there when I come across a flawed piece of editing or a sentence that once upon a time I’d have ‘read over’, and can’t do so now.

Are there occasions when I wish I was some kind of wonder woman who could sparkle at everything I tackled?  Of course there are.  Especially when I’m trying to work out how to do something, and having absolutely no success at all! But then I try to remember that quote Attributed to Jerome Eugene Morrow, a character from the movie Gattaca (1997). “If at first you don't succeed try, try, try again?”  Since I heard it as a child it must go back a whole lot further than that, but I can’t remember the source :-)


BLURB “From Now Until Forever”:

For Prince Liam, families meant bad news, unwanted commitments, and the loss of his personal freedom.  Love spawned white picket fences, slippers at the hearth with a wife and kids making demands, so why did those images disappear when he met Melanie Babcot?

Melanie Babcot fought hard to escape the horrors of her youth and vowed to remain single and free, so when paid to protect Prince Liam from insurgents why did her personal pledge fly out the window?

 BLURB “His Chosen Bride”:

Prince Henri Gasquet is happy to let his father, the king, choose his bride for him until he meets Monica Latimer.

Monica Latimer is not prepared to risk letting any man close enough to learn about her Gift. A gift that normally has men running for the hills when they find out about it.


EXCERPT “From Now Until Forever”:

Liam Fitzwilliam Gasquet stared in amazement at the blooming patch of red milliseconds before the pain exploded in his arm. Some trigger-happy idiot had fired in his direction. Indignation didn’t have time to take root before another bullet kicked the dust at his feet.
Not ‘trigger-happy’.


The rebels had found the fourth and youngest son of Jean-Phillipe Gasquet, ruler of the tiny kingdom adjacent to the Swiss border. When had they discovered his whereabouts?

With a reluctant sigh, he faced the truth of it. They hadn’t ‘found’ him at all. They’d followed him.

EXCERPT “His Chosen Bride”:

She lost track of time until the flames caught her attention once more. They flickered from orange to gold, to silver, to white.

A flurry of snowflakes masked the flames and for a second Monica watched the most beautiful, pristine snow-scene she’d ever seen. Her lips curved in longing. How she’d love to get a toboggan and slide down that slope. She knew where it was, and had done just that many times in her childhood, first with her parents and then, in clandestine manner, with her brother. Sneaking an old tin tray from the back of her mother’s walk-in pantry, she’d then grabbed Billy’s hand and they’d rushed out the back gate, heading for the lakeside track that led up into the hills.

Darkness, dense and thick with grief dropped over the scene.

Startled and disconcerted by the strength of emotion emanating from the vision Monica shifted to her knees, ready to stand, when a voice, a deep male voice, sharp with fear called out her name.


She knew she’d never heard the voice before, and yet—it was as familiar to her as the image she saw in her mirror each morning.

“Help me, Monica.”

Desperate for more clues, she searched the darkness within the flames until it sputtered and faded. With a curse she jumped up and ran for the phone. With her outstretched hand hovering over it she halted and let her hand drop to her side once more. What could she say? What would the police or rescue team think of her if she called them and told them she’d seen a vision of a man in distress?

They’d laugh in her face and classify her as a lunatic. Well, maybe not. It wouldn’t be the first time she’d contacted them with positive information but something—an instinctive gut reaction told her what she’d seen this time hadn’t happened yet.

                                             ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Multi-published author, Sherry Gloag is a transplanted Scot now living in the beautiful coastal countryside of Norfolk, England.  She considers the surrounding countryside as extension of her own garden, to which she escapes when she needs "thinking time" and solitude to work out the plots for her next novel.  While out walking she enjoys talking to her characters, as long as there are no other walkers close by.

Apart from writing, Sherry enjoys gardening, walking, reading and cheerfully admits her books tend to take over most of the shelf and floor space in her workroom-cum-office.  She also finds crystal craft work therapeutic.


Sherry will giving away the following prizes:
* One randomly drawn commenter at every stop will win a hand-crafted book thong.
* One randomly drawn commenter during the tour will win a hand-crafted selenite pendent
* The host with the most comments (excluding Sherry's and the host's) will win a hand-crafted selenite pendent 
 Note:  This giveaway is international
 Please follow the tour and comment to increase your chances of winning.


Buy Links for “From Now Until Forever”:

Buy Links for “His Chosen Bride”: