Monday, March 2, 2015

Recipes and Books

As you may be aware there are a number of cozy mystery series that involve food. The sleuths are caterers, restaurant owners, bakery owners, and chocolatiers just to name a few. Most, if not all, of the series include recipes for items within the stories. Some have recipes sprinkled throughout the book, others have them all at the end of the book.

If you're like me and like to read and like to bake, it's a good way to enjoy a good book and get a few new recipes at the same time. Since I'm always looking for new authors and new recipes, reading these types of novels allows me to do both at the same time.

Some of the mystery series I know of that include recipes are:
Hannah Swenson series by Joanne Fluke
Goldy Schulz series by Diane Mott Davidson
Angie Amalfi series by Joanne Pence
Magical Bakery series by Bailey Cates

I only know of one romance author who wrote a series of books with recipes included. They were by Shirley Jump and the series is called Sweet and Savory. I read these years ago so I'm not sure if they're available for sale but you might be able to get them out of your local library.

If you know of any other series that includes recipes, I'd love to hear about them.

Friday, February 27, 2015

This I know for sure...

By now I'm sure everyone has heard the verdict in the Chris Kyle/Chad Littlefield murder case. While I usually stay away from posting anything that may be a hot button issue for someone, I decided to make an exception in this case.

While I have no personal connection to the case, I followed the trial through various news outlets. I don't think I followed the case out of morbid curiosity. There have been plenty of sensational murder cases in the past few years that I didn't feel a connection to or a need to know how the cases were going as they were being tried. I think I felt a connection to this case because most of the male members of my family have served or are currently serving in the military. What happened to Chris Kyle and Chad Littlefield could have happened to any one of my male relatives who now work with veterans as a way to give back to the military community and as a way to continue their service.

The fact that Mr. Kyle survived four tours in Iraq only to be killed back in the US while trying to help a fellow service member just seems wrong in so many ways. I felt very sad for Mr. Littlefield's family because he seemed little more than collateral damage - I suppose one could say he was in the wrong place at the wrong time. He was at the gun range to help Mr. Kyle help the man who killed them

What was going on in Eddie Ray Routh's mind when he killed the two men who were trying to help him? Was it really an episode of mental illness? Was it because he consumed alcohol and smoked marijuana just before he was taken to that gun range? We may never really know, but I'm glad (and somehow that seems like a terrible thing to say) that he was found guilty and will pay for taking the lives of two men who wanted nothing more than to help someone in need.

Wednesday, February 25, 2015

What's Up Wednesday

This week...

My current WIP (work in progress): This week I didn't write any new pages, but instead worked on revisions for a book I completed last year. I've started working longer hours at my day job and am definitely missing the writing time I had before. I'm trying to figure out how to fit in some decent writing time into my new schedule.

Quote of the week: "It is perfectly okay to write garbage—as long as you edit brilliantly." ~ C. J. Cherryh  I tell myself this every time I start a new manuscript.

What I'm reading: Do or Die: Reluctant Heroes by Suzanne Brockmann. I'm a big Suzanne Brockmann fan and read almost everything she writes.

Random things: My mom and I went to see the touring production of Million Dollar Quartet at our local "Broadway" theater. I bought the tickets for her for Christmas and she asked me to accompany her instead of a friend. I enjoyed the show and would recommend it to anyone who likes Elvis Presley, Carl Perkins, Jerry Lee Lewis, and Johnny Cash.

Random Photo of the Week: 

Not a photo, but inspiring none-the-less.

Monday, February 23, 2015

Rationing Pages

Have you ever read a book that you were enjoying so much that you didn't want it to end?

I've had that happen a few times over the years. The story is so engrossing, I loved the characters and/or identified with them and what they were going through that I wished the story would continue and never end.When I come across these types of books, I find myself rationing the pages once I get to the halfway point. Part of me wants to read as much as I can so I can see how the story ends, the part of also wants to make the book last as long as possible because I'm enjoying it so much.

One such book was Kiss of Steel by Bec McMaster. In this case, I just loved the writing and the story itself. It was one of those books that you just can't put down and when you have to, you try to figure out how soon you can pick it back up again.

Another book was Lethal by Sandra Brown. A romantic suspense novel that keeps you on the edge of your seat from the very beginning.

Right now, I'm reading Do or Die by Suzanne Brockmann. The book has approx. 558 pages and I'm a little more than halfway through. I'm almost fighting with myself because I want to keep reading, but I know if I do, I'll be done with the book and have to say goodbye to the characters.

Have you read a book that you found yourself wishing it wouldn't end? What was the title?

Friday, February 20, 2015

Happy Valentine's Day...Or Not

I realize I'm a little late for Valentine's Day since it was last Saturday. I was wondering how many people celebrate the holiday. I mean really celebrate it - go out and do the fancy dinner, weekend getaway, exchanging expensive gifts etc.

I've never done any of those things. I don't like the idea of my boyfriend/husband feeling obligated to buy a gift or flowers or whatever because of a certain date. I'd rather he buy the card or flowers on any other day of the year because he wants to surprise me, not because he's worried he'll end up in the "dog house" if he doesn't get me something for Valentine's day.

How do you feel about Valentine's day? Do you celebrate it or not?

Wednesday, February 18, 2015

What's Up Wednesday

This week...

My current WIP (work in progress): I mentioned participating in RWA's The End challenge. I've written approx. 3,500 words since it started on February 2nd. The goal of the challenge is to write 2,000 words per month from February through December 2015. I'm feeling pretty good that I've already surpassed this month's goal and there's still 2 weeks left in the month.

Quote of the week: "You must make a choice to take a chance or your life will never change." ~ Unknown. Something to keep in mind.

What I'm reading: "He's So Fine" by Jill Shalvis. This part of her Lucky Harbor series. Ms. Shalvis is one of my favorite contemporary romance authors. If you haven't read any of her books, pick one up. You won't regret it.

Random things: I came into the living room the other day and was thrilled to notice it was after 5:00pm and it was still light outside. One more sign that Spring is coming. :o)

Random Photo of the Week: 

                                           I'm sure every writer feels this way.