Monday, January 28, 2013

Guest Blogger - Sherry Gloag

Please welcome my guest today - a fellow Astraea Author - Sherry Gloag with her latest release from Sweet Cravings Press!

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.

During the regency period a bad landlord could remove tenants from their property for the slightest of provocations, leaving the families destitute without a care in the world. But what would, and did, happen when members of the ton were threatened with the same disaster?

The Regency equivalent for today’s ‘property repossession’ is ‘writ of forfeiture’, and is only ever issues in the most dire of circumstances. For most, a short spell in a debtor’s prison, until he either paid off the debt or some influential family member or friend paid it off for them was the ultimate humiliation. But for the more hardened gamblers there came a time when friends and family turned the other way, ladies, normally only too willing to help their charming lover with ’a little financial help’ soon spread the word and the culprit would find all sources of credit withdrawn.

In No Job For a Woman, widowed Deborah Stavely is unaware that her infamous neighbours have been issued with a writ of forfeiture and are about to lose everything. So when she spurns the attentions of the equally infamous brother as no more than an irritation she has no idea she has put her life is on the line.

Inspiration comes in many shapes, sounds and forms, and for No Job For a Woman, a Regency romance released by Sweet Cravings Publishings in September, one word inspired the story and the plot and the characters that evolved around that one word.

So, what was it?


As in, ‘a writ of forfeiture’.

The question then became ‘so what?’ What would happen if a writ of forfeiture was issued, and to whom, and then the ‘why’ and the ‘how’ soon followed.

And of course you can no more drop a word into a story plot, than you can drop a stone into a pond without the ripple effect.

The next series of questions then became, who received the writ? And out trotted the ‘old soldiers’, who, what, when, why and how, rapidly followed by ‘what happened next?’ What were the consequences of this writ being issued and did they extend beyond the recipient. And if so, how far, and how many other people were drawn into what can be best described as the ‘domino effect.’

No Job For a Woman took several years to complete, so living that long with the characters made them very special and No Job For a Woman a joy to write

About the book!


Julian Fanshaw answers a call for help from his life-long friend Lord Worth to help keep his friend’s widowed sister, Deborah, safe from her increasingly vindictive neighbours. It doesn’t take long to realise him or Freddie long to realise the Grangers aren’t using her as a long-promised act of revenge against them; but are playing a deeper and far more sinister game of their own. Deborah Stavely is determined to overcome the increasing harassment from her neighbour without calling on her brother for help. So she is not pleased when Freddie intervenes and involves his friend, Julian Fanshaw.

Circumstances demand Julian and Deborah learn to work together and Julian dares to dream that he might gain the love of the only person he’s ever given his heart to. But will Deborah live long enough to discover that by releasing everything she values, she will gain everything her heart desires?


Julian Fanshaw ignored the other letters in front of him when he recognized one from his long-time friend Freddie Dalrymple, now Lord Worth. He broke the seal and scanned the single sheet with growing concern.

Julian, my friend, I am writing to implore you to put aside whatever plans you have in hand and to set out immediately to stay with us for an indeterminate period of time.

Thoroughly alarmed, Julian flipped the page in his hand to discover it had been dispatched more than a week ago.

If I bring to mind a certain student up at Oxford with us, and reveal that he and his wife are, and have been, my sister’s neighbors for several years, it will give you but an inkling of the root of my concern.

It has come to my attention, due to the arrival of his brother upon the scene, and recent events concerning my sister, Deborah, I am persuaded you need not only to know what is happening here, but be on hand to assist in circumventing any consequences of actions taken against her.

I have taken the liberty of gathering some friends together for a couple of shooting parties, thereby creating a reason for your presence.

Since his return from the Peninsular, Julian kept promising himself a trip to Worth’s Norfolk estate. Unfortunately in the last eighteen months, time and circumstances had worked against him.

Casting the letter aside, Julian strode to the door and called for his butler. “I am leaving immediately for Norfolk. Please see that my bags are packed and have my horse ready within the hour.”

“You do not intend to use your chaise, sir?”

“No. I’ll ride, with a stop to visit Mr. Sewel. Arrange for Becket and French to follow me in the chaise with everything I’ll need for a month.”

Not by so much as a flick of an eyelid did Thomas reveal he recognized the name of his master’s man of business.

“Very good, sir.”

© Sherry Gloag 2012

Available from and Amazon UK and B&N and all other good etailers!

Friday, January 25, 2013

Guest Blogger - J Andersen

It gives me great pleasure to introduce a fabulous YA author, J Anderson and her new book - At What Cost.

During her junior year, sixteen-year-old Maggie Reynolds expected to shop for prom dresses not maternity clothes. Now, instead of studying for the SATs, she’s reading, What to Expect When You’re Expecting. Maggie’s ‘Mother Dearest’ lives in fear that Maggie will somehow taint the family name, so Maggie can’t turn to her for help. Meanwhile, her father is oblivious to anything but his 9-9 job. And her boyfriend, Justin? She’s pretty sure he’ll stay by her side.

While Maggie wrestles with her options, Justin offers a solution: abortion. It would solve all her problems quickly, easily, and effectively. And her parents would never know, which means they won’t throw her out and cut her off like they’d always threatened if she got herself knocked up. But an easy decision becomes difficult when Maggie’s aunt discovers her secret and sets out on a mission to stop the abortion, putting a kink in Maggie’s plan. Now Maggie must decide which choice she can live with: abortion or teenage motherhood. Either way, it’ll be a tough road to travel.

Here's an excerpt!

Lauren stared at Maggie with wide eyes. “Pregnant? You’re flipping pregnant?”

Apparently, the word “flipping” was supposed to convey the substantial amount of shock Lauren had for the bomb Maggie had dropped. It worked. Maggie wished she had such a word to use herself. But she needed something stronger.

“No. I’m late.” Maggie tried to convince herself it was just a fluke. That she was late due to the stress her mother continually heaped on her or the new year of school starting, but the possibility she might be pregnant scared her to death. Still, she tried to keep her head.

Lauren wriggled like a worm on a hook. Being calm was not her forte. “Holy pig snot! That first day of school!” her voice trailed off.


“When you were looking at your calendar and got all weird and sick looking.”

“Yeah, so?”

“That’s when you figured it out, isn’t it?”

The thought sucked Maggie back into that disgusting, dirty bathroom where she counted and recounted the days on her calendar realizing she had skipped her period that month.

“Yeah, but I could just be late,” she said hopefully. “The stress of school starting and all. I’m just late.” More than anything, she wanted this to be true, but the view of the calendar in her mind grated on her stability until it was a flaky pile, blown away with one wisp of breath.

“You trying to convince me or you?” Maggie shot Lauren a narrow-eyed glare.

“Well, did you and Mr. Justin Davis use… you know,” Lauren asked, tucking her arms across her chest. She hated when Lauren called him that.


She leaned in and whispered it like a dirty word. “Protection?”

Thinking back, Maggie couldn’t remember. Playing that night over in her head a thousand times made the details a little fuzzy. “Yeah. I think so.”

“You think so, meaning you may not have?”

Maggie leaned back against the bed. She shook her head. “No, I’m sure we did. I made sure.”

“Mags! If you were drunk, how would you know? You were drunk, right? Please tell me you were drunk.”

“Not every time. I’d know, right? I’m sure we did. We had to.” They had used something, hadn’t they? Suddenly the purple butterflies clinging to Lauren’s walls flew at her as the room spun. Maggie choked down the bile rising in her throat and breathed deeply to steady the quivering of her lips.

“Well, if you did, it didn’t work, and if you didn’t, you’re an idiot.” Lauren slapped a hand over her own mouth. “Sorry, I didn’t mean that.” (C) J Andersen 2012

At What Cost is available from all good etailers including: and Barnes and Noble

Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Guest Blogger - Georgia Hill

Welcome a wonderfully talented writer and E-Scape Press author, Georgia Hill.

Here's some more about her.

After teaching for twenty years, Georgia decided to take a leap of faith and leave the chalk face to write. Her books reflect her interests: the theatre, Jane Austen, intriguing men, rural life and all things romantic. ‘Love’s As Easy As ABC’ is not at all based on her school experiences! She lives with her long-suffering husband, two naughty spaniels and a ghost called Zoe in a converted hop-kiln.

Her new release is called Love's as easy as ABCHere's the blurb!

Blurb: All Laura wants to do is begin her teaching career and forget her troubled past. After what she’s been through, she wants little to do with men, especially charming but untrustworthy fellow teacher Miles. When his coolly confident older brother is taken on as Deputy Head however, Laura has to reassess who she is and what she really wants. Has she the strength of character to recover her lost confidence - and will she ever find true love with the right man?

If you liked ‘In a Class of His Own’, you’ll love this sort of sequel.

And a taster!

All surroundings melted away. As if in a dream she watched him walk slowly down the steps towards her. In the distance she could hear the count down to midnight. It was nearly the New Year. Time for a new her. For a new start.

‘Oh I …’ she began and then all speech stopped. In the silvered light he appeared colourless, monochromatic. Then, as he neared, she saw his eyes. They blazed a hot blue which began an insistent rhythm in her heart. An invisible thread pulled her to him …

You can get your copy from AMAZON UK and AMAZON.COM

Friday, January 18, 2013

Guest Blogger - J F Jenkins


Mila takes a hands off approach to dating. She's independent and picky and thinks she knows it all. When her best friend decides to set her up on a blind date with a guy who an-swers to the name of Jax, Mila decides to take a leap of faith. After all, with a name like Jax, how can he not be a dream boat?

Like most blind dates, however, Jax doesn't meet the expectations that Mila created in her imagination. With how badly she's struck out in her past relationships, is that really such a bad thing?


Somehow, I let my best friend Morgan convince me that a blind date, on Valentine'ʹs Day of all days, would be an amazing idea. “Don'ʹt be alone on the most romantic holiday of the year!” she said. “That'ʹs the most pathetic thing you could ever do to yourself!” No, the most pathetic thing is going on a date, just for the sake of going on a date, all because it'ʹs Valentine'ʹs Day. I had perfectly awesome plans made for my night alone at home: kung-­‐‑fu movies and Chinese take-­‐‑out. There were no plans to wallow bitterly either. Okay, maybe a little bit of wallowing. The point is, I didn'ʹt ask or need a blind date. Yet, Morgan was able to guilt me into going anyway. Then again, with a name as delicious as Jax, how could I go wrong?

So I put on my cute, tight, black pants with my matching corset top and long trench coat, and went to meet this guy at the swanky Brazilian barbeque restaurant downtown.

“Can I help you miss?” the hostess asked, looking up at me from her podium.

“I have a reservation. Should be under the name Jax?” Just saying his name gave me butterflies. It was so sexy. He had better have a tattoo… or five.

The hostess glanced over her list, nodded, and then picked up a menu to lead me to the table. I swallowed, following her, and immediately began to play with my dark hair. A nervous tic, and one I'ʹve always hated. It seems too obvious, you know what I mean? Plus, I didn'ʹt want to ruin my hair before I even got to meet my date. There was plenty of time to do that later. Wink, wink. I went around at least five corners before I got to my table. We were way in the back of the restaurant which made for a nice private atmosphere, sure, but the anticipation made knots churn in my stomach.

“Your table,” the hostess said.

The table was the farthest from the front and tucked away in the corner. The young man sitting at the table with his back to the wall had the menu up over his face. He lowered it slowly, giving me a peek at a rather beautiful set of blue eyes, accompanied with tousled, dark hair. The menu was set onto the table top and he stood, giving me a better view. I had pictured tall, muscular, and a little rough on the edges. Some scruffy facial hair or maybe a scar, and an outfit that was more bad-­‐‑boy-­‐‑sexy than business casual.

Jax on the other hand was average height, clean-­‐‑shaven, and wore a long-­‐‑sleeved, navy button-­‐‑down and khaki pants. The guy had some muscle definition, because I noticed how the shirt clung to his chest in all of the right ways, and his biceps bulged ever so slightly under the fabric. He worked out, which was always a plus, but there was more gentle than tough in him. Something about him was vaguely familiar too, and I couldn'ʹt quite put my finger on it.

“M-­‐‑Mila right?” he asked. He actually stammered. I wasn'ʹt quite sure what to think about that. In some ways it'ʹs sweet that he was nervous enough to stutter, but it was also a little bit of a turn off. Okay, not a little bit – a lot.

I nodded, hoping that his nerves would pass and he'ʹd take a chill pill soon. “That'ʹs me, and you'ʹre Jax.”


I'ʹm pretty sure my smile twitched a little when he said it.

“Nice to meet you.” Nice was not the kind of meeting I wanted to have. Available from Amazon and B&N

Thursday, January 17, 2013

Girly Book Blog Hop!

Location, Location, Location is the name of this blog hop! There is a link at the bottom of the post to hop to the next stops on the hop.

There is a grand prize for entering this hop! and lots of ways you can get a rafflecopter entry to win. I'm tossing a pdf of The Cinderella Substitute into the grand prize kitty for my contribution. Also leave a comment here for your chance to win an extra copy of The Cinderella Substitute!

I'm located in the Black Country - that's a small region in the heart of the UK.

Near my home is a former stately home -Himley Hall - once the home of the Earl of Dudley and the honeymoon destination of Princess Marina in the 1920's. Now it's open to the public and you can get married or hold a prom there.The grounds were designed by Capability Brown and host lots of community events, including the annual dragon races on the lake and the fireworks to celebrate Guy Fawkes failed attempt to blow up the Houses of Parliament.

We have a castle that dates back to 1066 - it's a haunted ruin now thanks to Oliver Cromwell and the roundheads in the English Civil war. So lots of history! My books are also set in the UK. The Cinderella Substitute is set in Worcester - a city only 20 miles from my home and it also has scenes on the Dorset coast - another favourite visiting place.

Click here to enter the grand prize and to keep hopping and leave a comment here to win a pdf of The Cinderella Substitute!

Monday, January 14, 2013

Guest Blogger - Tanya Eavenson

I'm pleased to introduce Tanya, a fellow Astraea press author to you, to tell us about her latest release.

Tanya Eavenson and her husband have been in the ministry for fifteen years teaching youth, adults, and counseling. Tanya enjoys spending time with her husband, and their three children. Her favorite pastime is grabbing a cup of coffee and reading a good book. Tanya is a member of American Christian Fiction Writers and writes for Christ to the World Ministries sharing the Gospel around the world. You can find her on Twitter at @Tan_eave and contact her at her website WEBSITE Want to learn more about writing? Stop by her BLOG

1. When did you first discover that you were a writer?

I’m not sure when it happened really, but it took longer than most. See, I never intended to be a writer, it just happened when my husband left for a mission trip. Then in 2011 Unconditional semi-finaled in the ACFW Genesis contest. I still didn’t believe I was really a writer but I keep plugging away, learning the craft. It wasn’t even when I signed my first contract. It happened when my husband told me he was proud of me and that I trusted God and never looked back. That’s when I became a writer and an author at the same time.

2. Describe how you write a book – with your other responsibilities, does it tend to be something you work into your every day, or do you have to “set apart” time to write with open, undesignated blocks of time?

As a writer, I heard time and time again that I needed to write every day to be successful. I used to beat myself up when I couldn’t meet that goal. It took two years fighting with this idea when I finally gave up. So I decided to do something different, I set a word count goal each week, and it’s worked. Some weeks I write 3,000 words and others 7,000 depending on what’s going on during the week. Flexibility is the key for my writing success.

3. Tell us the range of the kinds of books you enjoy reading.

I love to read non-fiction that dives into God’s word. Next would be historical fiction.

4. How do you keep your sanity in our run, run, run world?

I’m still learning. =)

5. How do you choose your characters’ names?

I choose names that I’ve always liked. I remember being in middle school and picking out the names my children would have one day. And yes, I did actually name my youngest child one of those names, and that name is my heroine in my novel Unconditional.

6. What is the problem with writing that was your greatest roadblock, and how did you overcome it?

My greatest roadblock, and one I still face today, is being afraid of making mistakes for people to see. Most of the time I overcome it by praying, but it runs deep, so it’s a struggle.

7. Tell us how much of yourself you write into your characters.

I’d have to say that every character has a piece of me within them whether it’s something the character likes, a physical attribute, or even a journey of spiritual growth. There’s a scene in the novel where Elizabeth and Chris head out to the lake. Elizabeth tries to hold onto the dock, but is unable and the boat floats away. When I thought to add that scene, I could only laugh. It was the first time I’d ever tried to use a trolling motor.

8. Tell us about Unconditional and what inspired you to write the story?

What inspired me? Brokenness I guess you could say. Brokenness for families, children, and what happens when couples divorce.

I grew up in a family were divorce is common, like most people today, with the idea once you “fall” out of love, and you can’t get along anymore, it’s time to get a divorce. It was almost engraved in me witnessing everyone in my family get divorced one time or many times. I, too, almost went down that route with divorce papers in hand. I told myself many things at the time, but the truth. I was focused on our failures, not the hope that with God, all things are possible. The question was, were we willing to save our marriage at all costs? Would we fight for each other, whether we felt like it or not?

It is my hope through this story, that no matter the circumstances the reader is facing, a loss of a child, anger, emotional hurt, infidelity, abandonment, etc., they will know there is hope in Christ.

Here is the blurb for Unconditional.

He will fight for her at any cost…

Elizabeth Roberts can't remember her past, and the present is too painful. She turns to nightclubs and drinking to forget her infant daughter's death, her husband's affair.

When his wife's coma wiped out the memory of their marriage, Chris Roberts found comfort elsewhere. He can't erase his betrayal, but with God's help he’s determined to fight for Elizabeth at any cost.

She wants to forget. He wants to save his marriage. Can they trust God with their future and find a love that’s unconditional?

Here is an excerpt from Unconditional.

Chapter One

Elizabeth pushed herself up from the bed. Her gaze swept the dark room and fixed on the hall nightlight. Her hand grazed over her husband’s shoulder when a thought gripped her. Katherine. The baby monitor stood silent. Darkness shrouded the red and green lights that indicated movement.

Her chest tightened. She hurled the covers away and leapt to the floor. Panic made her clumsy as she rushed to her daughter’s room. She lunged over the crib. No sound. No movement. Not even a stirring of air from her tiny nostrils.

“Katherine!” Elizabeth snatched her daughter from the mattress. The infant drew a heavy breath as her eyes flung wide open.

Lord, what’s happening?

Elizabeth’s bare feet pounded the cold tile as she ran back to her husband.

“Chris, wake up! Katherine quit breathing again!”

Chris rubbed his eyes and scowled. “What is it?”

“We need to take Katherine to the hospital. She stopped breathing.”

He studied their child. “She seems to be breathing now. Are you sure?”

“Of course, I’m sure.”

“She’s fine.” Chris fell back against the pillow.


“We don’t have the money to take her to the hospital when there’s nothing wrong with her.”

“But there is. She stopped breathing.”

He sat back up. “You’ve been worried about her since before she was born. You’re all worked up because she hasn’t rolled over yet. The doctor said that’s normal for being early.”

She’s called a preemie. She glared into his eyes. “If you were home more often you’d know she’s not fine.”

“I’m home, Elizabeth, and she’s fine.”

Heat flushed her cheeks as tears filled her eyes. “I’m scared. Can’t you see that? I need you to pray for our daughter. I need you to hold me and tell me everything will be all right.”

“Look, she’s sleeping.” His voice softened as his hand ran down her thigh. “Come to bed.”

“How can you care so little? I’m worried about our baby.”

Chris’s hand dropped to the sheets. “Shut the door when you leave.” He turned away from her.

Elizabeth stood for a moment unable to speak. With their baby in her arms, she slowly closed the door behind her and sank her teeth into her lip to keep from crying. If tears came, it would be for her daughter, not for the stranger in her bed.

(C) Tanya Eavenson 2013 Available fromAMAZON US and AMAZON UK and all other good e-tailers

Saturday, January 12, 2013

Free at Smashwords and Kobo! Now free at Barnes and Noble - am working to get it free at Amazon. You can help by copying the link to B&N and reporting the free price to Amazon. I've had some lovely emails and reviews for Unexpected Treasure and I'm glad so many of you are enjoying my little short story. I really wanted to do something to thank all my readers for their support over the past year.

Thursday, January 03, 2013

Lights, Camera, Poltergeist! is out today

Things don’t just go bump in the night, sometimes they throw tea cups! As the presenter for Ghost Uk, the leading TV show investigating paranormal activity, Fae thought she’d seen it all. Until a Valentine’s Eve live show from Scotland’s Fingelly Manor upsets both her preconceptions and her love life.

Fae snuggled down deeper into the chunky knitted roll neck of her sweater and wished she could shake off the eerie sensations. She puffed out a sigh and watched her breath condense in the air before her face. It wasn’t only the room that was chilly. The relationship between herself and John had taken on a distinctly frosty tinge lately too.

She strolled across the room to the huge diamond leaded window that would have filled the room with light if it hadn’t been shrouded in dust and some dark red velvet drapes that had seen better days. Out in the corridor the electricians and tech staff were hammering and cursing the ancient electrical wiring.

The afternoon light had already started to fade and fingers of frost were beginning to form at the corners of the window. A flicker of movement near the trees on the far side of the lawn caught her attention and she leaned forward, almost bumping her nose against the glass in her quest to see what it was.

Whatever or whoever she thought she’d seen had vanished and she relaxed back on her heels. Working as a presenter on Ghost UK had made her jumpy. Every dark corner now held the possibility of something spooky. In such a deserted spot it was unlikely that anyone would be outside in the grounds, especially in this freezing weather.

“Fae, darling, there you are!”

She turned around to see her producer, Tim, sweeping towards her. She pasted a fake smile on her lips when she saw he was accompanied by the owner of the house, Giles McGinty, Laird of Fingelly. She’d already met Giles when she’d arrived and her impressions hadn’t been favourable.

“Giles has invited us all to dinner tonight before we start filming. Isn’t that marvellous?” Tim raised his eyebrows at her.

“That’s very kind.” Fae was quick enough to pick up the signal.

Giles smiled at her, his gaze lingering just a fraction of a second too long on her bust before raising his gaze to her face. “The pleasure is all mine. I’m looking forward to getting to know you all better before the filming.”

She suppressed a shudder as his dark eyes locked on her face. “John and I will look forward to it.”

© Nell Dixon 2013

Romance with Heart

Available from all good e tailers: Amazon US readers Amazon UK UK readers

Why not read more about Fae in Cue Me In? Haunted happenings in a Welsh Castle.Cue Me In