Put on your hard hat! Why do I love V.L Locey, Sharon Moore, Christina Cole, Flossie Benton Rogers, and Cassidy Frazee’s blogs.

Write about it Wednesday

I have talked over the last few weeks about the different stages of writing. The actual writing,http://cathybrockman.com/2015/05/06/put-your-writing-hat-on/ Research http://cathybrockman.com/2015/05/13/lets-go-digging/ Alpha readershttp://cathybrockman.com/2015/05/20/5850/ editing http://cathybrockman.com/2015/06/03/5908/

Now the fun really begins. Let’s put on our carpenter hat start building a platform.

hard hat

When I first started writing, social media was so daunting and a few groups I was in encouraged you to get social media coaches. In which I did. A good social media coach teaches you the steps of building a strong platform. Just like any other platforms if the foundation isn’t strong it will collapse and you will fall on your… well, you get the idea. Of course, with this as most other things in my life, I went overboard. Where my coach said choose three or four social media sites and only work them a few hours a week, I chose as many as I could find and worked hem a few hours a day. Soon I was overwhelmed, burned out, and still not too many people knew who I was or cared( good thing since I didn’t have time to finish any books). After lots of trial and error, I finally caught on and downsized. I found a few that are easy enough for me to use and just stick with that as a base and occasionally reach out in other new areas. Usually, I find the best bet if one of those work replace one that doesn’t work with this one so you don’t get back into the habit of too many social media sites.

When should you actually begin this platform? All the sites you read and coaches encourage you to begin as soon as you start writing. I will have to agree but don’t go overboard. Recently I got overwhelmed again and began at square one.

From my experience, I suggest you do build a good website first. Choose if you will blog on it daily, weekly biweekly or what and be consistent. I also suggest you pick a day a week to do the bulk of this and pre-schedule as much as you can. I found this gives me much more writing time during the week.

Creating a good schedule is key. Put your writing first then give yourself an hour a day and do your social media then and maybe an hour to work on your blog as well. Set a timer and when it goes off walk away. My timer is my best friend( when I actually use it).

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Do posts that encourage your audience to seek your writing out. Don’t just post about your book constantly. What are your books about? Do they focus on one thing? Do they center around food or Myths? Here are five of my favorites.

Parsley Sage Rosemary and Thyme ehttp://www.sharonarthurmoore.blogspot.com/ by Sharon Moore s one of my favorites She shares all sorts of cooking tips, recipes and guest posts.She also occasionally talks about her books and I will say the cute titles and fabulous food pictures on her covers along with the bits she gives on her blog has sold me her book.

VL Locey http://thoughtsfromayodelinggoatherder.blogspot.com/ Is one of my favorite authors both M/F and M/M. Her books re a bit on the sexy side so enter this one with caution. I think I have and have read every one of her books. She has fewer posts than some of the others. She has some guest posts and news of her releases and a personal post or two about her life on her hobby farm. Also some cute duck, goose and puppy pictures from time to time!

Cassidy Frazee https://wideawakebutdreaming.wordpress.com/  is a science fiction and fantasy writer and her posts are a bit longer. She shows us her timeline on scrivener and gives some insight on the characters and how the story is progressing. I also love seeing how she uses the Scrivener Writing program.

Flossie Benton Rogers http://flossiebentonrogers.com/ I love how she has Mythic Monday. Her books center around myths and magic so she posts about the topic ( yes I am about to break down and buy the Witch Fae series! I want Demoness Dreams badly and will need to read the others first.I also love the way she does her reviews it is very interesting and unique.

and Christina Cole http://christinacoleromance.com/ Though Christina hasn’t posted in a while I loved his blog. She had a day or so a week with a favorite recipe and I loved seeing the different ways people cook some of the same meals I cook.

As you see, each one is extremely different.

You can see here how each of these authors target a specific audience.

These are a few of my favorites, I had to limit the number of blogs I actually read each day as that was another thing that was consuming too much of my writing time, but there are so many awesome blogs out there!

 

I decided under good advice to do a little work on my previous blog. In the past, my blog was full of blog tours, other author’s books, cover releases, reviews and the like. It was 99 percent other author’s and not much about my writing or myself. So the first of the year I hired someone to redesign my website for me and got a domain name and here ya go. Cathy writes Romance at cathybrockman.com was born! I cut back on my posting of other authors and keep that to mostly one day a week. If I read and review a book I think was great and want to share I post that as well, otherwise the website is now more oriented to you the reader, myself and my work.

I love to cook and organize things, garden, craft and do trash to treasure. With the way, the economy is I find that a lot of you like to find new ways to stretch the budget. So I do a food and craft post on the weekends. I hope as my actual writing progresses to get back to a free story or at least some teasers for you as well.

But a good website, schedule, and a plan is only the bottom of the platform. Then you gotta get social!

Here comes the Bride

Ro- manic Monday april 2015

Hello everyone! Man is it hot! I  really hate the heat. My asthma makes it even harder on me to get out and do anything. But I have managed to get my rose garden replaced from the remodel and a lovely flower garden and veggie garden  in place with the help of my oldest Stepdaughter. I have several small tomatoes and a pepper already growing.  But I ramble.

June is the most popular month for weddings, then August, followed by September and October.  You can find more interesting statistics here. I was a bit surprised at what I read. http://www.soundvision.com/article/wedding-statistics-in-the-united-states

When I was younger and married the first time( don’t ask)  It was the Bride’s parents responsibility to pay for the wedding. Now that  most people marrying have been married before and are older with the bride and groom split the cost. It also seems that less and less weddings are the big traditional church weddings.   My wedding between my current husband of over 10 years was my favorite. We paid for it and I did most of the work. We had it out in my back yard in my rose garden. It was just family ( though between his family and mine we had  a lot of people and  I had several friends ad coworkers.  I wore a simple pink cotton sheath, he wore khakis and a mint green button up shirt.  I served  finger food, melon and a co-worker that does cakes for a living  made my cake as a gift. My best friend does photography so I got pictures as a gift as well.

I got married  Memorial Day weekend and we decided to go to Branson for our honeymoon since I have never been.  We saw some shows, rode the ducks( big amphibious machines that go in water ( we actually went into the river) My husband wanted to hear Andy Williams so we got tickets to that as well.We went to Silver Dollar City  and I talked him to ride the roller coasters (yes I am a coaster junkie)  We had a lot of fun and it didn’t cost and arm and a leg.

This may not sound like the most romantic wedding in the world, but it suited us just fine. and from a girl that has had the fairy tale wedding and a small private wedding with only  parents and the  this was by far my favorite. I didn’t have a digital camera back then so I don’t have pictures to share.

When my daughter got married  a year ago, she came to me  and asked me for one like mine.  So we did another simple family and friends things. It wasn’t as big as mine since My  mother passed away and my brother and father moved  too far away to come.  She wanted white chocolate cupcakes instead of a cake. Her neighbors father is  a minister and he did the ceremony at his church. It was beautiful. I do happen to have some pictures of that one. Her husband’s parents paid for them to go to St Loius for their honeymoon.

Margaret and caseys parents Margaret and caseys Margeret wedding dress wedding My Grandies

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Margarets wedding cupcakes

 

Margeret Casey and his parents…Bride and Groom… Margaret.. Bride Groom and special guest Daenerys  My Grandies Kira Drake and Daenerys  the cupcakes .

 

My point is that weddings are about love and romance not  about the money it costs to put into one.  It’s not the pomp and ceremony but the love behind it.  Today more and more people are without jobs or barely able to pay  bills and eat little less have a  big wedding. You can have a nice wedding  by dong it yourself and concentrate on the food instead of a lot of flowers. Pick what is most important to you, focus on that, then  find less expensive alternatives to the rest. If you want  a nice dress shop second hand or consignment stores. online clearance ( where  we found hers for only a little more than 100 dollars. Make our own cake…cupcakes are the new cakes and easier to transport and serve.  Create magic and memories not heartache and big  bills to pay off in the future.

Did you have a big fancy wedding or a small simple one? Do you have any tips on having a beautiful wedding without spending a lot of money?

 

Drama Queen

Cats meow reviews that purr

Hello Everyone! Today I would like to share with you a fabulous and funny author I recently met.  I asked him why he adds  so much humour to his mystery and here is his reply! Read on for an excerpt and my review!

Don’t we all need a good dose of comedy/mystery/romance in our lives? That’s why I created the Nicky and Noah mystery series. There is nothing more enjoyable than reading a novel and laughing out loud, trying to piece together clues, gasping at plot twists and turn, and cheering when your favorite couple (in this case college theatre professors Nicky and Noah) gets together. Add in the setting of a fictitious and quaint university in New England, lots of drama from the theatre department, and a cast full of humorous characters, and you have the Nicky and Noah mysteries. I hope readers will fall in love with Nicky and Noah as the two handsome men fall in love with each other. So enjoy DRAMA QUEEN. And watch out for DRAMA MUSCLE and DRAMA CRUISE coming soon!

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Title: DRAMA QUEEN

Series: Nicky and Noah mystery book 1

 Author: Joe Consentino

Genre: mystery/comedy/romance novel, M/M, GLTB

 Length: 196 pages

 Meows/heat level:    Purrs: ♥♥♥♥♥

 

  A little about the Book: It could be curtains for college theatre professor Nicky Abbondanza. With dead bodies popping up all over campus, Nicky must use his drama skills to figure out who is playing the role of murderer before it is lights out for Nicky and his colleagues. Complicating matters is Nicky’s huge crush on Noah Oliver, a gorgeous assistant professor in his department, who may or may not be involved with a cocky graduate assistant…and is also the top suspect for the murders! You will be applauding and shouting Bravo for Joe Cosentino’s fast-paced, side-splittingly funny, edge-of-your-seat, delightfully entertaining novel. Curtain up!

Published by Lethe Press (June 6, 2015)

You can Buy it here:

Lethe Press

Purchase the paperback from Lethe press at:

Paper back at amazon. 

Kindle  

My Review:Drama queen was such a fun hilarious read. If you like mystery with a touch of humour you will love this. So when bodies start dropping like flies Nicky and Noah find themselves together trying to find out who is doing the murder and to prove it isn’t Noah.  There are so many twists and turns, lots of innuendo and some sweet hot off page sex with Nicky and Noah. This is such a fun summer read so curl up and enjoy!

 

Meet Joe: Joe Cosentino Joe Cosentino is the author of An Infatuation (Dreamspinner Press), Paper Doll the first Jana Lane mystery (Whiskey Creek Press), and The Nutcracker and the Mouse King (Eldridge Plays and Musicals). He has appeared in principal acting roles in film, television, and theatre, opposite stars such as Bruce Willis, Rosie O’Donnell, Nathan Lane, Holland Taylor, and Jason Robards. His one-act plays, Infatuation andNeighbor, were performed in New York City. He wrote The Perils of Pauline educational film (Prentice Hall Publishers). Joe is currently Head of the Department/Professor at a college in upstate New York, and is happily married. His upcoming novels are Drama Muscle the second Nicky and Noah mystery (Lethe Press), A Shooting Star (Dreamspinner Press novella), A Home for the Holidays (Dreamspinner Press holiday novella), and Porcelain Doll the second Jana Lane mystery.

You can stalk –oops- friend him at: Facebook:

Web site: 

Facebook: 

Twitter:

Goodreads: 

Amazon: 

 

 

 

 

 

Run! The Zombies are coming

Save It Sunday

Today for my save it Sunday I am going to show you how we did a birthday party without spending too much money.

Our birthday girl is turning 11.  Her name is Alexandria Pearl (Allie.)

 

She wanted a Zombie or post apocalypse party theme. We went to the everything is a dollar store and stocked up on gifts I got her 5 things of makeup and a basket (50cents) to put it all in. Her mom bought her a few things there as well. Her big gifts was a 10 dollar sundress she had been wanting and the first season of The Walking Dead. I got her a 500 collection.

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For goodie bags we made survival bags using old gift bags from past holidays and brown paper lunch bags we had found on clearance a couple years ago (I stock up on these things I think I gave 50 cents for the package) We filled them with A flashlight and fan we found t the dollar store, some glow sticks, hand sanitizer, tissues, wet wipes, a can of Vienna sausages and a package of ramen noodles. Each bag cost me about 6 dollars.

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For our sweets we made Zombie brain blood clot cupcakes.

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You will need a white or yellow cake mix

(Ingredients the box calls for)

1 can of strawberry or cherry pie filling (we used Strawberry)

Optional food color (we added green)

(We used white and added green food color. prepare according to directions.  Fill prepared cupcake tin halfway with batter add on or two cherries and a bit of the filling top with more batter to fill the cupcake tin repeat for each cupcake  makes 12.

For frosting we used a can of white to make it look tannish brown we added a little red made it a pinkish color then a little yellow and green.

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We cut the corner from a sandwich bag added a cheap store bought tip and squiggled the frosting start in center and work in halves to look like two hemispheres ( I would suggest using two cans of frosting ours was a bit sparse but we think they are cute.

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Then Anna and Bradley wanted to add finishing touches and this is what we have… eleven cupcakes for her age.

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We made Zombie boogers. This is popcorn with a green coating. Here is where we found the recipe

http://blog.paperandparcel.com/2012/09/zombie-boogers.html

we didn’t have corn syrup and looked up the substitute this is  what we did

4-6 cups of popped popcorn

3 cups brown sugar ½ cup water

2 cup granulated sugar

1 cup butter ½ tsp salt

Put all this in a heavy saucepan and bring to a boil. Boiled 4 minutes. Add ½ tsp vanilla add green food color until the color you want make it a bit darker. Add ½ tsp baking soda and this will double the recipe. Toss in popcorn.  Prepare two large baking sheets with waxed paper or foil and spray with cooking spray. Spread popcorn in one layer per pan (as close as you can get. Bake I a preheated 50 degree oven about 10 minutes then turn and bake a bit longer watch carefully ours began to burn I about ten minutes.

This looks really nasty but tasted pretty good though the baking soda makes it a little salty. Sort of a salted caramel taste.

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We made Zombie fingers. Here is the original recipe we found

https://www.pinterest.com/pin/532691462148425756/  we changed it to 1 bag of the large rolled gold pretzel sticks, 1 bag of Reese’s  cooking chips a couple slivers of paraffin and a tablespoon of butter we melted the pieces according to directions and it was too stiff so I added the butter and paraffin then dipped the pretzels. The bowl I used was a round cereal bowl and hard to dip so I ended up having to spread it on. I suggest if you have something longer or deeper to use that. Then I stuck an almond on the tip and called them Zombie fingers.  These are so good I could at them all (made 12)

We set the table with a cheap plastic table cloth from the dollar store ripped a few holes in it and put paper bags and newspaper under the tears. You can see our cheap place settings. And what about the dead flowers in an empty soda can? Cute huh?

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The meal is weeds (salad served in a new dog bowl I bought for Sally),

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brains (or guts), eyeballs, and blood with fingers on the side.

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And here is our birthday girl enjoying her undead party.

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Do you like to do themed parties?  What are some you have done?

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Two Man Advantage

2man banner

Hello Ya’ll! Today I have the lovely V.L .Locey with us here to talk about her new release Two Man advantage. It’s a charming M/M Hockey romance. Don’t forget to enter the Rafflecopter for a chance to win an E-copy

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Author Name: V.L. Locey

 

Book Name: Two Man Advantage

 

Release Date: April 15, 2015

 

Pages or Words: Novella

 

 Categories: Bisexual, Contemporary, Erotica, M/M Romance, Hockey Romance

 

Publisher: Ellora’s Cave

 

Cover Artist: Allyse Karam

Victor Kalinski, all-star forward for the Boston Barracudas, is one of the biggest jerks in professional hockey. Before long his aggressive attitude gets him shipped off to play in the minor leagues.

Furious, he takes to the ice with equal amounts of skill and scathing sarcasm, which doesn’t win him any friends—except for good-natured alternate captain Daniel Arou. He won’t take any of Vic’s crap, and he won’t take no for an answer.

But Vic’s troublemaking is pulling his career one way while Dan’s talent is pushing his in the other. However much they scorch the sheets, they might soon be separated by more than Vic’s fear of being hurt.

Inside Scoop:  This book contains scorching gay sex and a heaping helping of no-holds-barred snark between hot hockey heroes who don’t pull their punches.

 2man advantage

A little more Two Man Advantage:

Have you ever just watched someone sleep and been petrified and appreciative simultaneously? I know how totally stalker that sounds, but it wasn’t like “I’m a glittery vampire who sits here and watches some underage chick sleeping” weird. Okay, maybe it was a little bit of that kind of weird. I mean, I was lying beside Dan, admiring the hills and valleys of his back as the sun caressed his tanned flesh. His skin was smooth but clammy. The blankets were tangled around his legs. He slept just like he went through life—with energy. His thrashing was what had awoken me, as it had a few times during our road trip. Instead of snapping at him then stealing the covers back, I took this time to visually adore his body. Yeah, I was that fond of it. And him. Rest assured, that terrified me no end.

You can buy it here: http://www.ellorascave.com/two-man-advantage.html

 Vicki at Wedding

Meet V. L.:

V.L. Locey loves worn jeans, belly laughs, reading and writing lusty tales, Greek mythology, the New York Rangers, comic books, and coffee. (Not necessarily in that order.) She shares her life with her husband, her daughter, one dog, two cats, a flock of assorted goofy domestic fowl, and  two steers: one named after a famous N.H.L. goalie while the other carries the moniker of a 60s pop legend.

When not writing spicy romances, she enjoys spending her day with her menagerie in the rolling hills of Pennsylvania with a cup of fresh java in hand. She can also be found online on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, and GoodReads.

You can stalk—oops-follow V.L.:

Facebook- https://www.facebook.com/pages/VL-Locey/124405447678452

Twitter- https://twitter.com/vllocey

Pinterest-http://www.pinterest.com/vllocey/

Goodreads- http://www.goodreads.com/author/show/5807700.V_L_Locey

My blog- http://thoughtsfromayodelinggoatherder.blogspot.com/

tsú – https://www.tsu.co/vllocey

Goodreads Link: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/25242856-two-man-advantage

Enter to win an E copy of of ‘Two Man Advantage’ by V.L. Locey
a Rafflecopter giveaway

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Don’t stop here…go check out these other great stops

Parker Williams, Hearts on Fire, MM Good Book Reviews, Chris McHart, Molly Lolly, Fangirl Moments and My Two Cents, BFD Book Blog, Rainbow Gold Reviews, Cathy Brockman Romances, Cate Ashwood, 3 Chicks After Dark, Inked Rainbow Reads, Bayou Book Junkie, Velvet Panic, Scattered Thoughts & Rogue Words, Michael Mandrake, It’s Raining Men

WillPride mia

 

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