Romantic Times Conference 2008

I just returned from the Romantic Times conference last night. I found Pittsburg, what I saw of it, a very beautiful city downtown. The river ran right past the hotel and the opposite bank is so high the locals call it a mountain.

The highlight of this conference for me was of course the booksigning and meeting old and new friends whereever I went. I signed No Regrets, which you all know was my American Title finalling book for the 2006 contest. I sold out!!!! squeeee!!!!

I was especially grateful to the ladies who bought my book including booksellers and those who brought my book from home, what a humbling experience. I am also grateful to Rebecca York, a very gracious lady, who was my only signing companion, since I was the last person on the list, and we chatted throughout the four hours of the signing.

I severely damaged my car while driving around Pittsburg looking for the hotel, losing the bottom door panel of the car when I made a tight turn and hit a very high curb. I heard it go clunk, but there was no stopping in the middle of such a busy city. It wasn't until I got to valet parking that I saw what I had done. A huge strip of skirting gone from my beautiful grand prix.

As you can imagine, I was so mad at me. And kept thinking about that big piece. Maybe I should find it. But I didn't have a clue where it had happened by the time we had driven around the down town twice. But I couldn't let it rest. So I put on my running shoes and walked the nearby streets.

Well I finally found it. Some kind person had picked out of the road and put it against a building on the sidewalk. It was at least six foot long, but made of fibreglass, so I picked it up and marched back through the fancy downtown core of Pittsburg with it under my arm, trying to look as if it was the most natural thing in the world. Lord knows what the valet guys thought when I calmly asked them to put it in my car, which of course had disappeared to who knows where valeted cars go. But he smiled sweetly, and said yes ma'am and leaned it against his booth.

And I marched into the hotel with cheeks blazing. Anyway when I told my husband what I'd done, I was able to announce with some pride that I had the missing piece. No, I'm not going to tell you what he said. lol. Actually he was much calmer about it than me.

After such an inauspicious start, the rest of the conference was great. Busy. But very enjoyable. I met lots of old friends and made some new ones who I hope to meet again, either here or on line.

I had lunch with writers I admire very much, Gaelen Foley and Barbara Pierce. Both historical writers and both of them were getting awards and I met them in the line up for lunch and they asked me to join them.

My critique partner Molly O'Keefe received an award for best superromance of the year, so that was a thrill and thoroughly deserved might I add. Here she is making her acceptance speech.

There was so much packed into four days, I can't really begin to tell it all in such a short space. But I did want to share the flavor of it all with you. I guess I will leave you with one more image, the blue fairies! This is me and Helen Scott Taylor the latest American Title winner at the Fairy Ball. Who said writers are introverts?

I will announce the winners of my draw for a copy of Brides of the West on Thursday. Until then, Happy Rambles.

No Regrets Is Available!!!!

There is nothing more moving than holding a copy of your book for the first time. At least to me. Here is a picture from this past weekend.

This was taken at the Emerald City Writers conference, and apart from all the wonderful workshops and the other authors, I signed No Regrets for the very first time.

Here is the picture to prove it. No Regrets should be in stores here in Canada this week, but it has been spotted in America already. My newsletter will be going out this week and if you are a subscriber, you will be entered in the draw to win a signed copy. Good luck to you all.

Today, I am blogging over at Titlewave where I get together with the other American Title Finalists who were in the historical contest two years ago. We have become sisters, it seems, after all we went through in the contest, we could not part, so use the blog as a way of keeping contact.

Several of my sisters were at the Emerald city conference and you will see us all at the booksigning standing behind Gerri Russell who, while incapacitated by knee surgery, was her usual charming, sweet self. Also in the picture you will find Ruth Kaufman, Gina Black and Theresa Meyers, and me, in pink.

Today, I am interviewing Christine Wells about her book Scandals Daughter a Berkely Sensation on the Titlewave Blog. Drop by and leave a comment. You could be the lucky winner of a signed novel.

Until next time, have a Scary Halloween and Happy Rambles

Regency Ramble Events

What is happening in my world over the next two months?

October 1, No Regrets is released. Look for it in your local bookstore, or on Amazon.

October 15, Regency Ramble Quarterly Review. I will be drawing for a prize from my news letter list. To subscribe, see the side panel of my Regency Ramble blog and on my website

October 27, Book signing in Seattle, at the Emerald City Writers Conference. Sleepless in Seattle - I don't think so, but I will be signing and meeting with some of my American Title Sisters

November 5, Book signing at Chapters in Woodbridge. This is a very friendly store. If any of you are in the area drop by, you will also find some other great Toronto writers hanging out.

There will be more, but these are the things that are confirmed.

In my last blog I took a poll about whether you wanted to go around the circle again on Regency Fashions. The overwhelming response was yes. So next month we will again go month by month. I will try to give you new fashions and gowns, but if occasionally I duplicate, I hope you will forgive me.

Happy Rambles.

Regency Fashion for September

September is turning out to be a sizzling month as I impatiently count down to the release of "NO REGRETS". Romantic Times gave it a four star review and if you go to my website you will find it there.


I looked back to see when I started blogging the fashions by month and do you know I think it was October. So this is either my last month or I have to go around the circle again with new fashions for each month. What do you think?

I think you will spot right away that this is not Regency, even if you didn't look at the 1799 date, but will you look at those gowns? They are almost Victorian. But no. It really is 1799. Here is the description.

Morning Dress.—First Figure. White chip or straw hat tied under the chin; lilac or white muslin crown; muslin or lace frill round the neck. Close muslin robe buttoned down the front, and trimmed round the bottom with blue ribbon, or printed border; pale-green gloves and shoes.
Second Figure.—Round straw bonnet trimmed with white ribbon, and small flowers in front; the hair turned up behind. Jacket and petticoat of spotted muslin; white muslin sleeves and cuffs: the jacket trimmed round the bottom with white lace or muslin: pale blue gloves and yellow shoes.

Interesting that for the second one they call the gown a petticoat.

My second choice today is and evening dress from 1810, right at the start of the Regency. It really is gorgeous.

From La Belle Assemblee: An Evening Full Dress.

A pale blue gossamer silk dress, worn over a white satin slip; made with short train, and frock back; the hind part of the dress made entirely open, and tied down with small bows of white satin ribband; long sleeves formed of pale buff gossamer net, and the same as the gown, fastened down on the outside of the arm with small pearl brooches, the tops of the sleeves and bosom of the dress bound with silver edging, and trimmed with Valenciennes lace; the bottom and train is ornamented with a silver edging, a little above which is laid a rich Valenciennes lace; on the head is worn a bandeau of pearls, fastened in a knot on the right side, with Bird of Paradise plume. The hair is rather short full curls over the forehead, and curled in light ringlets on the right side of the neck. A scarf of pale buff silk (ornamented at the ends with white silk tassels) is worn fancifully over the figure, and confined in a pearl ring. Pearl earrings; shoes of pale buff satin; yellow kid gloves.

I think the Bird of Paradise plume is stunning, but I do feel sorry for the poor bird.

Until next time. Happy Rambles.

Author's Update

Help, Monday is almost over and here I am and no blog.

Forgive me please.

There are times in every writer's life when time is not his or hers to control. One of those is when your editor asks for a revision. It happened to me this week.
No complaints mind. If she's asking for revisions, it means she cares about the book and an editor caring about your book is a very good thing. Time consuming, but good.

I lieu of research and in view of the reason for not having anything for you, I thought I would give you a quick update on where things are on the writing front.

Well, No Regrets is at the printers. It is coming out in October. You may have seen the ad in Romantic Times right alongside Georgette Heyer's Cotillion.
Here is the cover, just in case you have forgotten what it looks like. I am also posting it on the sidebar with a link to B & N where it is available for pre-order. Or you can wait for it to arrive in your local bookstore.

Now I am going to let you into a little secret.

Coming out around the same time -- I will have a precise date later -- is the Anthology Mail Order Brides, from Highland Press. Inside you will find my short story Snakeskin and Satin, one of four on this interesting theme. This story is a bit of a departure for me, because it is set in the West. Yep, honey, the wild west, in the Victorian era. I had so much fun writing this story, I hope even you Regency addicts will take a little peek when it comes out.

Here is the cover and a little teaser, just for fun.

Snakeskin and Satin are a bad combination.

Even if the snakeskin comes with longs legs, broad shoulders and eyes as blue as the sky. All bristles and twigs, according to her mother, Tess Johnson never expected her mail order husband to be a living, breathing, handsome cowboy who rejects her on sight.

Jake Granger needs a widow to raise his nephews and cook his dinner, not a satin-clad, as-delicate-as-porcelain, city woman. Even if she is the kind of woman to keep him awake at night. He can't take the risk.

With no reason to stay and a brother to track down, Tess prepares to move on, until trouble strikes the Circle Q. Fighting to save his herd and his sanity, Jake learns there's more to satin than a silky whisper against his skin.

Now, back to those edits. I hear the sound of a whip cracking. And it has nothing to do with cowboys.

Until next time -- Happy rambles.