Flotsam & Jetsam

What set Ellie off anyway? A thought intruded. No, couldn’t be. He checked her profile. Nah. But his mouth formed a hopeful smile, and he leaned back, humming his favorite tune. Flotsam & Jetsam

The dashing Frenchman or the handsome handyman? Who will she choose? For the Love of a Spy

Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Leap Year Blues

Welcome to the World’s First Leap Year Blog Hop (oh there are so many word play possibilities I can’t begin to count…). To the commenter who can name the origin of Sadie Hawkins Day I am giving away a pdf copy of your choice of my four romantic suspense novels. Please make sure you leave your email address in your comment so I can contact the lucky winner.  And now for the main attraction:

Leap Year Blues
There is a tradition in England that if a woman wears a red slip on Leap Year Day the man she proposes to will accept her, love and cherish her for the rest of her life. I’m not from the UK, but I am an anthropologist and therefore willing to play by Roman rules where it suits me.
You know where this is leading. Yes, Leap Year. And this little Wile E. Coyote light bulb  went off in my head.  Ooh, ooh. I’ll propose to him. He won’t be able to deny me—after all, it’s Leap year (this is known in psychiatric circles as Denial). But, how to do it? In the words of another equally successful romantic figure, the wicked witch of the west, “These things must be done delicately.”
So, I Googled. And discovered the above tradition about red slips.  I hauled myself to Victoria’s Secret. No dice. Red lingerie is sold only at Christmas and Valentine’s day. Today we have your black, your teal, your hot pink… No? Off to Nordstroms. “My dear, scarlet niceties? I don’t think so.”
And so it went.
Around about twilight on Leap Year Eve I sauntered…well crawled…into Sears.
I love Sears. After all, Sears gave me my very first credit card, with which I bought my very first TV (a little black and white number with snazzy push buttons and a real antenna). I renewed my vows when I found the one and only red slip in the entire Washington metropolitan area.   Lacy, carmine, slinky and it fit. Sold, to the desperate little lady in bunny slippers.
I wended my way back home and booted up the laptop. Since the love of my life only communicated via email (he did not insist on my actual presence at our R-rated exchanges—a clue perhaps?) I wrote him. “I have the requisite red slip.”
He wrote back, “Huh?”
Me: “Now it’s okay for me to propose.”
Him: “Huh?” (I said he was gorgeous, not quick).
Me: “So?”
Pause. “Wait a minute, are you proposing?”
I refrained from the non-articulate and possibly insulting “Duh,” and answered with simple clarity: “Yes.”
Wait for it.
A little longer.
Okay, one looooong minute.
“Aren’t you sweet.”
For a more cheerful romance, try my latest, Triptych, in which legend, history and romance intertwine in a triptych of suspense. Click on the cover to your left for more information.

Please visit the next great blog on our hop: Juliette Springs at www.darkersideofromance.com  for more Leap Year leaps of faith…

Friday, February 24, 2012

Watch for Upcoming Blogs on the Writing Craft

I am writing a series of blogs on the how-tos of editing your own work. I'll talk about how to delete a major character, how to redo an entire story in a few easy steps, and how to cut your manuscript in half without cutting your own throat in the process. All of this of course is by command of your editor. So you have no choice. Look for the first blog March 2 at Karenna Colcroft's site http://www.karennacolcroft.com/.

Monday, February 20, 2012

Ad Lines: Teaser or Summary?

Visit Lynn Crain’s Log Line Blog today, February 20, where I’ve posted the Log Line (aka Ad Line) to my romantic suspense Losers Keepers, a tale of love, lust and treachery set on the barrier island of Chincoteague. 

Is an ad line supposed to tease or summarize? Readers & authors, please feel free to comment, edit or whatever.

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Blog Hop Winner

I'd like to thank all those who came by & commented on my Best & Worst Valentine's Days! It perked me up on what could probably qualify as one of my worst. Congratulations to Shadow Kohler for winning a pdf of any of my four books! Look for my email, Shadow!

Saturday, February 11, 2012

Valentine's Day Blog Hop

Welcome to my blogspot, oh ye Blog Hoppers! I have reminisced a bit about good and bad Valentine Days I’ve had—or rather I haven’t. The reader who makes the best comment will win a copy of any of my four published romantic suspense novels (your choice, pdf version). When you comment,  please leave your email address so I can contact the winner (or email me at meredith@meredithellsworth.com).

Go to http://thebloghopspot.com/event-page/ for the next hop.
 The Best of Times, The Worst of Times: 

I sat down to write my blog for the Valentine’s Day Blog Hop of 2012 and ended up two hours later still staring at a blank screen.  I thought it would be easy. My chosen topic: My Best and My Worst Valentine’s Days.  Everybody’s got those stories, right? Valentine’s Day is one of those High Expectation holidays, when the slightest deviation from roses and champagne is met with histrionics (or a simple tear allowed to dribble down one’s soft cheek). Therefore we all must have amazing memories of the best of times and the worst of times. Right?
Not me. For the life of me I couldn’t think of a single memorable Valentine’s Day.  I did, however, come up with other noteworthy holiday events. For instance, Groundhog’s Day, 1970, when I sat on a college dorm room floor with several other be-beaded, long-haired, braless women and let myself be ogled by the local Lothario. To this day we still exchange Groundhog’s Day cards.
It’s hard to forget the Labor Day in 1987 when I went into labor (I did not, of course, appreciate the irony at the time).  It must have been July 4, 1961 or so when my brother, sister and I dressed in white sheets and carried a large plastic replica of a Johnny Walker bottle in my town’s Independence Day parade. We called ourselves The Spirits of ’76 and won First Prize for Originality.
But Valentine’s Day. Hmmm. I suppose my best would be my first weekend trip with my future husband. Though mature adults, we nervously eyed each other for two whole days and I gave him a really stupid card.  We went on to spend 30 wonderful years together, but honestly, I can’t remember another special Valentine’s Day.
As to my worst: with such low expectations (this is the gal who had a blind date to her Senior Prom) it’s hard to choose. Perhaps the year I moved into my current house in 3 feet of snow? Or the year the only chocolates left in the box had that icky maple filling?
So, nothing I couldn’t handle. I guess the bottom line is I have no horrible memories of Valentine’s Day. They’ve all been just…fine. Maybe that’s a good thing.

Saturday, February 4, 2012

Timely Talk of True Love

How do you define true love? Does it take two to tango or can one person love another truly without reciprocation? I make a stab at answering these & other questions today at Sex Marks the G Spot. I hope for and expect lots of comments—after all, it’s a subject that is probably of great significance to both readers and writers of romance.