Lauraine Henderson began writing as a child, poems and journaling, until babies, building houses, and bookkeeping jobs usurped her world.
Now, well established in Oregon and with the children grown, she devotes her time to writing her favorite genre: clean romance. Years of life experience translate into plots, calamities, and happily-ever-afters as she writes her inspirational and romantic stories about fictional people who seem so real, you’ll want to know what happens after the book ends!
Where’s the harm in pretending to be engaged for a couple months?
Elliott Palmer’s brilliant impulse to propose a fake engagement to his sister’s teacher in order to get rid of a stalker may be the biggest mistake of his life. Or it could be the best thing to happen since his cookie empire went national.
Charlotte Bloomberg feels like she’s walking a tightrope at work after the scandal last year that almost cost her teaching job. Yet…Elliott’s proposal could be the answer to her saving face with not only her co-workers, but her family, too.
As the two work through school calamities, nosy family members, and a stalker getting closer all the time, the lines between real and fake start to blur when hearts get involved. But what happens when the police insist a wedding date will bring the stalker out in the open, and Elliott suspects Charlotte of being a crook?
Q&A With the Author:
1. Why do you choose to write romance? Do you write any other genres?
I love writing clean romance because I love reading clean romance. There is so much negativity and hardship in the world, people with disabilities of one kind or another, and societal unrest. I want my readers to be able to escape their everyday challenges and relax for a couple hours. I don’t write any other genres at this time. I’ve thought about writing some non-fiction and I may do that someday.
2. How long does it take you to write a book, typically?
Typically, it takes me about six weeks of steady writing to write a book. Unfortunately, I don’t always get to spend my time steadily writing, which means my books take a lot longer. Once the first draft is completed, it usually takes two to three more weeks of editing and revisions before I get to the final manuscript.
3. Since a lot of romance books show both male and female perspectives, share with us the most difficult thing about writing the perspective of the opposite gender?
The hardest part of writing from a man’s perspective is getting the emotions right. I know men and women think differently and feel differently. I use music and listening to the comments of men in my world to figure out my hero’s perspective.
4. What would you say is your interesting writing quirk?
This is a difficult question. I guess I would have to say that sometimes, when I’m writing, my character will say something that changes the direction of the scene and I will usually go with it, letting the story write itself in many ways.
5. Tell us a bit about a future project you are working on? Do you have any little sneak peeks you can share?
I’m working on the second book of the Cookie Romances, A Cookie and a Promise. This is the story of Elliott’s sister, Kelly, and her ex-boyfriend, Brandon. They were both supporting characters in the first book, A Cookie and a Kiss. The time is five years later, after Kelly and Brandon are out of college. Kelly hasn’t seen Brandon since the summer before senior year in high school, when Brandon broke up with her. Now, Kelly is done with school and excited to take her place at her brother’s side in their family cookie business. Brandon was promised an internship by Elliott and he takes it. When it’s obvious they still have some unresolved feelings to work through—read: they can’t seem to stop fighting at work—Elliott forces them to collaborate on a new cookie recipe or they’re both fired! Collaboration leads to reconciliation, but all is not at it seems when the cookie recipe fails and Kelly and Brandon have no one to blame but each other.
6. What is the most romantic date you have ever been on? Or, what is your idea of the perfect Valentine Date?
My husband provides me with a lot of inspiration. Our first date—yes, the very first one—was one of the most romantic dates ever. He picked me up in the morning, we double-dated with another couple and tried to go boating, but the boat wasn’t working, so we came home. To make up for the wasted day, we went out for dinner and he let me pick the restaurant. I chose a restaurant at the top of a hotel in downtown Portland. We dressed up in long dresses and suits and had the most elegant dinner. He said it was the best steak he’d ever eaten. Great conversation and lots of laughs over the calamities with the boat. Once dinner was over, we dropped off the other couple and he took me to “the top of the world,” a deserted street at the top of a hill that looked out over the lights of the valley. He parked the car, turned on the radio (hey, it was before the days of iPods and cell phones), and we slowed-danced in the street. Then he took me home and tenderly kissed me good-night.
Sally Britton is a bestselling indie author, with four historical romance novels. She contributes to the Historical Hussies blog and teaches a young writer’s class at her local library. Sally received her BA in English from Brigham Young University. She’s always read voraciously and eclectically.
Sally started her writing journey at the tender age of fourteen on an electric typewriter and she’s never looked back. Sally lives in Arizona with her crime-fighting husband, four children, and their dog. She loves researching, hiking, and geeking out over her favorite books and movies.
A scarred and lonely viscount and an independent young woman are forced into an arranged marriage. What hope do they have for a happily ever after?
Rebecca Devon lives under the severe eye of her aunt and the iron will of her father. Though she wears what she is told and befriends the people they choose for her, she spends every moment longing to do as she wishes. Knowing freedom will only come through marriage, her hopes for a happy union are stolen away when her father arranges her marriage to a complete stranger.
Christian Hundley, Lord Easton, has learned the hard way that English society won’t accept a person who looks or behaves differently than their ideal. He has hidden himself away from scornful eyes for years, until his aging grandfather takes matters in hand and finds Christian a bride. Knowing he must agree to the marriage, Christian shields his heart. If the whole of society cannot accept him, why should his bride?
Rebecca knows she must have love in her life, but Christian is convinced there is nothing so fraught with danger and pain as entrusting one’s heart to another. Rebecca does everything she can to change his mind, but Christian is determined to remain aloof. Can an arranged marriage ever be anything other than a business partnership?
While this is the fifth book in the Regency romance series, Branches of Love, it can be read as a stand-alone romance.
“This is not a game, and you are not a
child,” Christine said firmly. “This is your life. Not a broken toy, or a
spoilt holiday. Loving someone is not so easy as determining not to let the
rain ruin a picnic.”
“Why not?” Rebecca asked. “It is all a matter of
perspective. If I meet this man and choose to see the good in him, the qualities
that one would admire and love in another, it may be enough.”
Christine didn’t appear convinced. “And if that doesn’t work? What is your next
“To be friends, of course. To find a way to make a marriage between us
“What if he is cruel? What if he treats you terribly?” Christine pressed the
issue, her dark brown eyes full of apprehension.
“There is no use worrying on it until it proves to be the case,” Rebecca said,
then cleared her throat when she heard the tremble in her voice. “If I have no
choice in who I marry, I must at least hold onto the possibility of choosing
how I go about my life with this man. Don’t you understand, Christine? Hope and
my wits are all I have.”
Award-winning author, wife, mother, grandmother, Harry Potter geek, Army veteran, karate black belt, and online gamer girl.
As the eighth earl of Kellworth, Gareth is accustomed to getting what he wants. Then he encounters a woman he suspects is from the future–a utopian future that he feels compelled to see. He intends to get what he wants, but it will involve dealing with fae magic. And that could lead to disaster–for his heart.
Dr. Catherine Ryan is drawn to the handsome guest at Twickenham Manor, with his odd combination of childish excitement and old eyes that have seen too much pain. She loses her heart to him before she discovers the truth of when he’s from. Now she faces the biggest decision of her life!
Dead? The comment brought a macabre feel to the evening, and Catherine’s curiosity-itch flared. She peered at the stairs again with narrowed eyes; she had to investigate.
But, if Aunt Nellie were to discover Catherine up there, would she be banned from coming to Twickenham again? She reminded herself that “curiosity killed the cat.” In her mind, her grandmother’s voice finished the old adage, “But satisfaction brought him back.”
Still, Catherine needed to ask herself if the risk would be worth it. These balls had become the one bright spot in her life. If she were to lose them too . . .
Then the ever-present pull gave a stronger tug, the sense that there was something else going on and she must investigate. The American woman had said “they” were dead. Catherine was a doctor. Surely she had a responsibility to investigate.
Glancing to make sure she was alone, she picked up her skirts and began the climb. Winded by the time she reached the last landing before the fourth floor, she paused to catch her breath, vowing to start exercising regularly. Catherine had been blessed with a fast metabolism, so people were forever thinking she was fitter than she was.
She climbed the last flight. The hallway was unremarkable, lined with paintings. Listening for the sounds of movement, she examined the portraits as she went down the hallway. She heard nothing, and she didn’t smell blood.
One door stood open, so she let the tug lead her inside. The long room held nothing but more paintings. How odd. There were a few chairs scattered around, but it didn’t look like it was meant to be a regular gathering place for people to sit together and talk.
Most of the pictures were busts of individuals, but in the center of the room hung a large painting of five people, three women and two men. Catherine blinked. It was the Americans, and their painted images wore the same clothing the five had on tonight. She shivered.
The young man she’d danced with hadn’t attended the Regency immersion vacation, having only arrived that day. When had someone had time to paint him? She’d also never heard that Twickenham had an artist on staff.
She studied the rest of the pictures in the room. Some were dressed in Regency clothing, but there were many others that spanned several eras. The one with the Americans was the only picture of such a large group. Whoever had arranged the paintings lacked any sense of design, leaving large sections of the walls empty.
That pull came again, as though Catherine had a string attached to her chest that drew her. This time it was to a portrait of a man placed to the right of the one with the Americans. Catherine came to stand before his painting, wondering who he was.
He appeared to be a little older than she was with a few silver strands at his temples. He also had what she’d call a regal bearing. She worked with enough surgeons and specialists who were used to being in charge, and this man had that look about him. He also wore an expression of someone with a fierce determination, the type of man people would steer clear of.
Catherine stepped closer to the painting. Behind the force of will that he projected, he had pain etched on his face. Her heart ached for him. What had happened to mark him that way?
Stan published his first book at age 5, when he managed to win a local writing contest for the library.
He’s matured (slightly) since then, and has switched from writing about a boy and his dog, to clean contemporary romance, murder mysteries, and light fantasy/sci-fi.
Along with his wife, 9 (and counting) children, and a ninja cat, he inhabits a place with a pair of national parks in his backyard.
He considers himself really rather blessed.
Jim Sharp is the only widower in the senior class of Mendon State University. Still reeling from the tragedy that claimed the love of his life, he struggles to pick up the pieces and close his heart forever to love.
When an otherworldly encounter places him squarely in the path of new love, Alex sees no way to give his crushed heart away a second time.
His wife, however, has other plans.
I collected my books mechanically, checking off the titles on my list. I rounded a corner for my final item and nearly tripped over myself when I noticed I wasn’t alone in the aisle. A pixie cut blonde in a light blue polo shirt and dress slacks was slipping books back on to the shelf. At first, I guessed it was another bookstore employee, but then she turned just enough that I caught a glimpse of her shirt. A silver pirate brandishing a sword was embroidered over her right breast, encircled by the words “Smithville” and “High School,” and underscored by the graduating class right after mine. I hadn’t seen another student from my old stomping grounds in almost two years. Most of my peers had either stayed home to farm, joined the Army, or gone to the local community college.
I hesitated. My eyes wouldn’t let go of her. That was a serious problem.
Jim—go get her, said a painfully familiar female voice in my head.
J. L. Petersen lives in Denver with her husband. She finds inspiration in her adopted state of Colorado and her belief love is the most powerful positive emotion we can experience.
Logan, the eldest of the MacBride clan, is thrilled at his brother Clay’s pending nuptials to Sandy. But when Sandy’s sister RJ arrives at the family’s ranch, Logan’s world is turned upside down.
However, the sisters’ shared past has created scars and barriers against love testing Logan’s ability to push aside his need and patience to win RJ’s trust and ultimately her unwavering love.
RJ ached for her sister. Sandy was always the starry-eyed sister. But she was hurt by how Sandy could have been going through this and never saying one word to her. She had to know. “Why couldn’t you talk to me about this?”
“I’ve struggled with how I was going to answer that,” Sandy said, holding up her hand to forestall RJ interrupting her. “I know I should tell you the truth but I think my truth will hurt you. I never want to hurt you.”
“I’d be more hurt with lies,” RJ told her. She’d learned early to protect herself from the cruelties her family could dish out and instinctually threw up her emotional guards.
Sandy nodded. “Alright. I didn’t want you to ruin it for me. I know you wouldn’t see it that way but you’re so against love and marriage, I just didn’t want you to pop my bubble until I figured out what I felt and wanted.”
RJ felt those comments like a physical blow. No barriers she could erect stood a chance against her sister thinking she would ruin her chance for happiness. She couldn’t speak.
“Oh, RJ! Don’t cry. You never cry,” Sandy wailed when she saw the silent tears in her sister’s eyes. She started crying also as she grabbed her sister’s hands. “I’m so sorry. Please, please don’t cry.”
RJ slowly pulled her hands free from her sister’s grasp. “Why do you want me here, now?”
“Because I love you. I want you to share this with me. I know you want me happy. I just didn’t want logic and family history to interfere. I wanted to understand, on my own.
RJ couldn’t tell if she was breaking up inside or freezing up. Afraid she would break down in pain she stood. “Sandy, I can’t do this right now. Can I call you tomorrow morning?”
“I thought we were going to spend the night together?” Knowing she’d hurt her sister crushed her.
“Okay,” she said standing, then wrapping her sister’s stiff body in a hug. “I love you.”
Nodding, RJ strode away before she lost it. She didn’t look back.
Ren Garcia is a Science Fiction/Fantasy author and Texas native who grew up in western Ohio. He has been writing since before he could write, often scribbling alien lingo on any available wall or floor with assorted crayons. He attended The Ohio State University and majored in English Literature.
Ren has been an avid lover of anything surreal since childhood. He also has a passion for caving, urban archeology, taking pictures of clouds, and architecture. He currently lives in Columbus, Ohio with his wife, and their four dogs.
Raised in the dark under the lash of the Black Hat Sisterhood, when the woman who would become known as Kat, is sent on a suicide mission into the heart of the League, she was not expected to survive. Her mission: discover the identity of the fabled Shadow tech Goddess, a being who does not exist. All other considerations, including her possible death, are secondary.
But, Kat is guided by higher powers, by merciful hands that feed her, clothe her and whisper in her ear. As she watches the sun rise for the first time, she recalls their words: “Be strong,” they said. “You have much to live for.
Top Ten List:
10 Fun facts about the Author:
–I was once engaged to a woman 20 years my senior.
–I once looked down the barrel of an FBI Agent’s drawn pistol.
–I once took a home IQ test from a book and scored a 58.
–Similar to the Bird Box challenge that’s all the craze these days, I once nearly plunged to my death by walking into the deep end of a drained swimming pool in a pitch black abandoned YMCA.
–I was once royally chewed out by Maria Shriver.
–A childhood rite of passage, my bout with the Chicken Pox nearly killed me as a boy.
–My entire family has brown eyes, yet I have blue eyes. After 3rd grade biology class, I announced to my mother that I couldn’t possibly be her son.
–I once received a check for $150 dollars after a treasure chest full of stolen Mexican booty was discovered on a relative’s property. The $150 was my share of the divided spoils.
–For a 2nd grade essay in 1975 that was to be placed in a Time Capsule under the school, I predicted the coming of GPS.
–As the infamous White Hurricane of 1978 dumped 10 feet of snow on the ground and gave us -61 wind chills, I STILL had to go to school in a treaded armored personnel carrier donated by the National Guard.
Debbie currently lives on the west coast with her husband and two dachshund rescues, Dash and Briar. She loves to hike, work in the garden, and on most sunny days you can find her enjoying her backyard with a glass of wine.
She’s an avid supporter of animal rescue, and as a pledge to all animals seeking their forever home, she happily donates a percentage of all book sales to local and national rescue organizations. When you purchase any of her books, you’re also helping animals.
Breanna Murphy has been planning her wedding for years so when her fiancé runs off with a hula dancer, she is forced to realize her destination wedding is nothing more than an exotic vacation for one.
Trying to escape the embarrassment and disappointment of being jilted at the altar, Breanna answers an ad for a job clear across the country. When the voice on the other end offers her the job, she’s excited about what awaits her in California.
Builder Calvin Comstock must make right on his daughter’s mistake regarding the nationwide advertisement and hiring of Breanna. He doesn’t know what to expect, but when Breanna walks into his office with her infectious smile, peaches and cream complexion not to mention her sexy southern drawl, Calvin is happy for his daughter’s error.
Breanna is drawn to Calvin’s mature movie star good looks, charming personality, soft voice, and strong hands. She’s trying to stay focused on the job and not the overwhelming lure she feels pulling her in to test the waters. But when the two realize the attraction is mutual they throw caution to the wind and give in to the undeniable desire to be together.
Can an ex-wife and a teenage daughter spoil their happiness or will it make them stronger than ever?
Top Ten List:
FUN THINGS ABOUT ME YOU MAY OR MAY NOT KNOW!
1. I donate a percentage of book sales to
2. I have two rescue dogs, Dash and Briar.
3. I retired after thirty years of federal
service and now write full-time.
4. I have three grandchildren and a fourth
that will be born by the time you read this!
5. I lived in Seoul, Korea for two years
where I taught English to Koreans.
6. I lived in Germany for three years,
participated in many volksmarches, and learned to like wine!
7. I lived in Panama for three years, saw
iguanas and ate monkey meat!
8. I rode in a helicopter inside the Grand
Canyon! It was scary!!
9. I got stuck inside an elevator once in
Germany. To this day I don’t like elevators.
10. My dream vacation is to visit Italy,
Scotland, and Ireland, not necessarily in that order.
“I was born and raised in Los Angeles, California, the second of four children. Growing up with the influence of a long line of teachers with a passion for classical education, my time was filled with lessons in violin, cello, piano, ballet…and not-so-classical Girl Scouts and softball.
At the age of twelve, I traveled throughout Europe with my Grandmother and aunts, who filled my days with the shared reading of classics such as Jane Eyre and Sherlock Holmes, developing my love of literature early on.
I pursued my love of literature into college, earning a Bachelor’s of English, a Master’s of Education, and I am currently working to complete a Master’s in English.
My first novel, All the Wrong Places, started as a short story for a creative writing course and chronicles many of my experiences living in a mortuary, raising my daughter on my own and discovering my Christian faith.
My years in college writing programs have left me with a varied collection of short stories, plays and poetry covering many personal experiences from teenage rebellion to single-motherhood and spiritual awakening.
While writing and continuing my own education, I taught High School English in an attempt to pass my love of literature and writing on to others, and continue to share that passion with students and other aspiring writers.
I currently spend my days pursuing my creative dreams and reaching out to women to share my experience, strength and hope as a survivor of sexual assault and domestic abuse.
I reside in Eagle, Idaho with my husband, and my very large cat. “
Driving aimlessly through the stormy suburbs of San Francisco, Casey Wheeler is fleeing from her abusive and unfaithful husband with her five year old daughter Maddy asleep in the backseat. With nowhere to go and no one to turn to, Casey loses control of her emotions and her car, crashing into a hillside below a mortuary.
Desperately seeking shelter, and more so independence, she finds herself taken in by the mortuary director who apprehensively offers her a job and a place to live. As she stumbles through the ins and outs of her new and morbid surroundings, Casey is forced into a hostile custody battle with her relentless and increasingly violent husband.
In the midst of all the chaos, she finds a new family and even love in the eccentric and protective people of Golden Oaks Funeral Home. But just when she has found all she could hope for, she will have to fight to the death to protect it.
This semi-autobiographical story of a single-mother and her journey to self-discovery, independence and a true understanding of love will keep readers captivated and yearning for more.
Top Ten List:
1. My Faith. It saved me.
2. My husband. He is my very best friend.
5. Good TV & movies.. Comedy (see above)
6. Family and friends. Getting together. Hopefully to laugh.
9. Jane Eyre, Pride & Prejudice, Elf & Young Frankenstein. All day.
My name is Robyn Echols. Zina Abbott is the pen I use for my historical novels. I’m a member of Women Writing the West and Western Writers of America. I currently live with my husband in California’s central valley near the “Gateway to Yosemite.”
I love to read, quilt, work with digital images on my photo editing program, and work on my own family history.
I am a blogger. In addition to my own blog, I blog for several group blogs including the Sweet Americana Sweethearts blog, which I started and administer.
Prequel to the Atwell Kin series:
would be easier to stop the flow of the great Missouri and Kansas Rivers than
to prevent the Americans from coming to Kansas.
It is 1856, and the United States opened Kansas Territory to American
settlement two years before. Land belonging to the once-powerful Kansa tribe,
known to the whites as the Kaw, was sold by treaty to the Americans a
His Kansa mother died from smallpox while Charlie was young. He lives with his
American father who owns a trading post in Bonner Springs near the junction of
the Kansas and Missouri Rivers. A child of two nations, Charlie learns through
harsh experience he is not always accepted, including by the father of the
pretty redhead who has caught his eye. The arrival of thousands of white
settlers makes matters worse.
Frustrated, Charlie visits his Kansa uncle to learn the tribal ways, travel the
Kaw Trail to their buffalo hunting grounds, and become a warrior with a
warrior’s name. Once he knows both worlds, he will decide which will best serve
him in the future.
Meadowlark’s traditional father wishes her to marry Broken Wing, a
highly-respected full-blood Kansa warrior close to his own age. Meadowlark
rejects being the junior wife under a dying oldest wife and a wolverine of a
second wife. Once she learns her childhood friend who left the tribe years
earlier has returned to the Kansa, she seeks him out. Even if he does consider
her for a wife, can she persuade her father to allow him enough time to prove
himself as a warrior? Will her father accept him for her husband in spite of
his mixed ancestry?
Will Charlie decide on a future with the white Americans, or will he fight the
coming of the Americans by clinging to the past with the Kansa? Will he try to
straddle both worlds? What will Charlie choose?
Top Ten List:
Zina Abbott Ten Top Favorite Things:
1. My faith and attending Church
5. Dark chocolate (There is a symbiotic
relationship between 3, 4, & 5)
6. Road trips with my husband
7. Attending writing conventions (6 & 7 are