Monday Mayhem – Kicking names and taking…

I have to tell you, I had a killer awesome weekend writing-wise. I started a new project called Play Dates. Yes, I know, you wanted Hooligans next, but trust me when I tell you that there’s a whole bunch of convoluted reasoning behind the switch in schedule. Anyhoo, I started Play Dates this week, but didn’t have a lot of time to get words in. So, I scheduled some play dates of my own.

First, I hooked up with my pal, Parker Kincaid, for pastries and pantsing at Panera. No, that doesn’t mean we pulled each other’s drawers off. It mean we both write by the seat of our pants. Fueled by bagels, danish, and toffee-nut cookies, we managed to put up some respectable numbers in the old word count column.

But then on Sunday, I took part in this:

retreat

As I type this, we are in the dinner/break portion of the day, and I am proud to report that I have over 4k for the day!

Between sessions, I did a little stint on the elliptical (part of the Body by Gilmore Girls program-I’m on ep 3), threw together some crock pot salsa chicken with black beans, ran to the store, and frolicked outside with the puppies.

I hope to get at least another 1000-1500 words this evening, and round out chapter 2. Jewels has totally kicked butt too. We’ve decided that we like having more defined writing times. Eyes on the prize and all that.

How was your weekend? Hit any goals? Take any naps? Share! I like to live vicariously. 😉

Oh! And starting this week, I’ll have a new feature on my blog – Teaser Tuesdays. These will give me a chance to introduce you to some of my writer friends and their latest projects.

That means this joint is jumping at least 5 days a week. Remember to stop by for all the fun:

Sunday – 8 sentence challenge

Mondays are Mayhem

Teaser Tuesday

Whatcha Reading? Wednesday

Fangirl Fridays!

Oh! Oh! Don’t forget to add your email address to my newsletter list. I have combined Margaret and Maggie’s previous lists and will start moving most of my future contests, excerpts and giveaways to the newsletter mailings thanks to Facebook and other social media outlets restricting the fun stuff, so be sure to hit then newsletter sign up on the sidebar if you aren’t already on there. 🙂

Happy Monday!

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Monday Mayhem – Written in the Stars

This weekend, Fodder and I packed a suitcase and a snack bag and hit the road. I decided at the eleventh hour to attend the North Louisiana Storytellers and Authors of Romance (NOLA Stars) Written in the Stars conference, and I’m sure glad I did.

Friday evening, I arrived in time to hook up with my DSRA pal, Nena Clements, and say hi to fellow Arkansan, Keri Ford. I was also in time for the food and fun of the meet and greet reception. 🙂

Saturday was jam-packed with great workshops, a chance to meet some writers I’ve only chatted with online, and (dun-dun-dun) my first-ever, live pitch to an agent or editor. That’s right. I have 8 novels, 16 novellas and over a dozen short stories published without ever having to sell a story with just the words coming out of my mouth.

You know what I learned?

I’m no good at it. The second I got past the introduction, my thoughts went haywire and all semblance of cool went flying out the door. I…am a babbler. Thankfully, the agent and editor that I spoke to were both very kind and patient. They’re also at least partially fluent in babble, because they both asked to see what I was offering.

So…yay! I did it! And now I know what I need to work on before zipping out to NYC for RWA nationals. Well, that and the stories I want to write before I go. So this week, I will once again be preparing submission packages for Full Court Press.

*claps and bounces* I’m just so relieved that people seem interested. I’m also relieved that I don’t have to do that again until July.

How about you? Are you a savvy salesperson? Can you talk your way through anything? Or, are you one of those people who purposefully chose a major that involved mainly essay tests and blue books?

bluebks

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Weekend Writing Warrior – 3/1/15

Well, will you look at that…March. Huh. Guess I should stop feeling so smug abut having all my February posts done. I’m in the middle of prepping two manuscripts for submission. Eep! Here are 8 lines from Bossy Pants – the sequel to Three Little Words.

Three Little Words_Maggie Wells

The implication hurt more than he wanted to let on. They’d spent over a week practically living in each other’s pockets and she still believed the gossip more than she believed in him. In them. “I’ve never said anything like that to any woman,” he replied, keeping his tone as even as possible. “I told you before, I believe this is Fate. You are my Fate.”

“I told you already, I believe we make our own Fate.”

“Then I’m asking you to choose me. Make me your fate.”

That’s it from me this week. I hope to wrap up work on both Bossy Pants and Full Court Press this week, so hopefully I’ll have fresh new words on a brand new project in weeks to come!

Be sure to check out all of my fellow Weekend Writing Warrior posts.

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Monday Mayhem – Catching up

So, yeah… I made it back from Vegas! Came home to ice and ick, but I got to sleep in my own bed. Had a fabulous time with my girls. It’s only been a few days, but I’m already jonesing for next year.

sign2

I learned a new skill this week. Don’t think it’s one I’ll be using a lot, but I did learn to make banners using Pixlr Express. I used Spring Chickens and a silly pun for my practice run:

SC banner

Since last we chatted, I finished the draft on Bossy Pants and sent it off to Jewels for her to work over. Got back to work on finishing the first draft on Full Court Press this week and guess what? I did it! I’ve been working on this story on and off for the past 10 months. There’s still a lot of buffing and polishing to be done, but I’m looking forward to working on something fresh and new.

Here are a few of my options. What do you think I should take on next?

1) Play Dates – On an outing at the park with her niece, our heroine, Monica, meets a sexy single dad. The only trouble is, he doesn’t know the precocious little girl who calls her ‘Monnie’ isn’t hers, and Monica doesn’t know how to break it to him.

2) Executive Privilege –  A widow uses her late husband’s Senate seat as a springboard for her Presidential campaign. The only trouble is she’s in love with her husband’s former chief of staff and best friend. Friends turn to lovers on the campaign trail but the press is hot on their tail.

3) Dirty Blonde -She’s the scandalous small town hairdresser – dresses in Daisy Dukes, cowgirl boots, and knows unbuttoning the third button down ups her tips nearly 20%. He’s a former Army engineer & wounded warrior. Scarred inside and out, he’s happy to be home, she’s dying to get out. They should never have fallen in love.

4) Something Stupid – An aspiring actress nearly loses the role of a lifetime when she makes the mistake of confessing her feelings for her best friend’s brother – Hollywood’s hottest young filmmaker.

5) Hooligans – The first in a series of stories about three generations of single men who run a neighborhood pub in Chicago. There’s nothing Rory Houlihan wants more than to get married and have a family and his meddling grandmother thinks the girl next door, Mary Pat Brady, would make an excellent candidate. As a matter of fact, it just might be her dying wish.

What say you? Do any of these trip your trigger?

 

 

 

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Weekend Writing Warrior – 2/22/15

One last dose of Full Court Press. Next week, I hope to have fresh new words to share!

“I’d be happy to offer any advice you might need.” She pitched her voice loud enough for their audience to hear. “You know where to find my office, right? Straight down the hall past the four NCAA championship trophies and turn right at Naismith awards.”

Turning her brilliant smile on the rapt reporters, she gave a jaunty wave and bounded up the steps, her long legs eating up concrete with the same gusto she’d exerted in smashing his ego.

“Oh, and if you reach the case with my old jerseys and the Olympic team photo, you’ve gone too far, but you’ll find your way eventually.” She nodded to the reporters and the Athletic Director then homed in on him once more. “Welcome to Wolcott, Coach.”

That’s it for this week! Be sure to check out all of the Weekend Writing Warrior posts!

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Weekend Writing Warrior – 2/15/15

Here are another 8 sentences from Full Court Press. Women’s Basketball Coach, Kate Snyder, is not pleased about the hiring of NCAA bad boy, Danny McMillan, as Head Football Coach.

Had days of denials done the trick? Had they sent one of their interns over to cover what they thought might be a non-story? Could the powers that be at the largest sports network in the nation been so easily fooled, or was it simply that they’d taken one shot then decided anything having to do with Wolcott Football was beneath their notice?

Did Mike Samlin truly think he could hire the bad boy of collegiate athletics, at a purportedly astronomical salary and not have that come back to haunt him at contract time?

Oh, hell no.

She was a Wolcott Warrior and a champion. These men thought they could waltz into her world and take what they wanted. Well, they had another thing coming.

That’s it for this week! Be sure to check out all of the Weekend Writing Warrior posts!

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Weekend Writing Warrior – 2/1/15

Okay, one last bit from Spring Chickens (just because I love Lynne and Bram so much) and then I promise to move on:

A muffled curse followed by a loud thump made his smirk fade into a satisfied smile. He pressed his ear to the door, listening for the whisper of her feet against the floorboards. His fist met wood again, urging her to move faster.

“Come on, sugar, the sun’s up.”

He glanced over his shoulder, checking to be certain the horizon wouldn’t prove him a liar. The locks tumbled and the door swung open. The woman he loved glared at him from under tangled clumps of golden-brown waves.

He smiled. “Good morning.”

SpringChickens-MEthridge-Md

 

SPRING CHICKENS

You don’t have to be a spring chicken to fall in love

***

Bram Hatchett thought he buried his heart with his wife, but when a big city beauty blows into town to dispose of the family farm, she captures everyone’s attention. Particularly his.

Lynne Prescott’s former marriage was marked by her husband’s infidelities and doomed by the secrets and lies he left in his wake. Disillusioned and adrift, she seeks refuge in the simplicity of small town life.

There are few secrets in Heartsfield, Arkansas, but when a few loose boards on a rickety old porch bring them together, not even the combined forces of nosy neighbors, disapproving children and a disturbing decrease in the poultry population can stymie the attraction between the handsome widower and the intriguing divorcee.

But Lynne and Bram are both old enough to know there are no guarantees in life.

Can they set the fears of their pasts aside and learn to trust their hearts just one more time?

Be sure to check out all of my fellow Weekend Writing Warriors and see you next week!

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Weekend Writing Warrior – 1/25/15

Here’s a little more from my latest novel, Spring Chickens:

“Make your offer, Bram. The farm’s what you wanted all along.”

Her voice was scarily calm. So calm he couldn’t give her anything more than the bare-faced truth. “Yes, I want the farm,” he exploded. “It’s never been a secret. Everyone knows I planned to buy this land when it came up for sale.”

“Everyone but me.”

SpringChickens-MEthridge-Md

SPRING CHICKENS

You don’t have to be a spring chicken to fall in love

***

Bram Hatchett thought he buried his heart with his wife, but when a big city beauty blows into town to dispose of the family farm, she captures everyone’s attention. Particularly his.

Lynne Prescott’s former marriage was marked by her husband’s infidelities and doomed by the secrets and lies he left in his wake. Disillusioned and adrift, she seeks refuge in the simplicity of small town life.

There are few secrets in Heartsfield, Arkansas, but when a few loose boards on a rickety old porch bring them together, not even the combined forces of nosy neighbors, disapproving children and a disturbing decrease in the poultry population can stymie the attraction between the handsome widower and the intriguing divorcee.

But Lynne and Bram are both old enough to know there are no guarantees in life.

Can they set the fears of their pasts aside and learn to trust their hearts just one more time?

Be sure to check out all of my fellow Weekend Writing Warriors and see you next week!

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Weekend Writing Warrior – 1/18/15

Having a hard time waking up this morning? Here are 8 sentences from my latest release, Spring Chickens, to deliver your morning jolt:

She laced her fingers at the base of his skull, sliding her hips along the edge of the table and pulling him along with her. “You had coffee. Gimme more of yours,” she whispered and yanked his head down again.

He chuckled against her mouth, his lips molding to hers—tasting, testing, tempting. “Like that?”

She squeezed her eyes shut and shook her head. “No. Yes. More.”

SpringChickens-MEthridge-Md

SPRING CHICKENS

You don’t have to be a spring chicken to fall in love

***

Bram Hatchett thought he buried his heart with his wife, but when a big city beauty blows into town to dispose of the family farm, she captures everyone’s attention. Particularly his.

Lynne Prescott’s former marriage was marked by her husband’s infidelities and doomed by the secrets and lies he left in his wake. Disillusioned and adrift, she seeks refuge in the simplicity of small town life.

There are few secrets in Heartsfield, Arkansas, but when a few loose boards on a rickety old porch bring them together, not even the combined forces of nosy neighbors, disapproving children and a disturbing decrease in the poultry population can stymie the attraction between the handsome widower and the intriguing divorcee.

But Lynne and Bram are both old enough to know there are no guarantees in life.

Can they set the fears of their pasts aside and learn to trust their hearts just one more time?

Be sure to check out all of my fellow Weekend Writing Warriors and see you next week!

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Monday Mayhem – Mmmmkay?

Hiya gang!

How’s it going? I’ve been completely…lazy. Okay, maybe not completely. I did have a release last week – Yay! Spring Chickens!

SpringChickens-MEthridge-Md

Also available in paperback for those of you who wish to bump the old cover off the shelf, though I imagine I may be giving away a signed copy or two once I get mine.

In other news: I added about 4k to Bossy Pants on revision. For those of you who don’t know, Bossy Pants is the follow up to Three Little Words

Three Little Words_Maggie Wells

It features Greg’s best friend and perennial bachelor, Will Tarrant. Will is a bad boy who may be just a tad misunderstood. He also looks a suspiciously like Dermot Mulroney.

Beverly Hilton Hotel

Funny how that happens.

I am also getting the rights to Seducing Steve back and will be preparing to revise and re-release it as an self-published title. 🙂

And did you know that every Sunday I post 8 sentences from one of my works on my blog? It’s part of the Weekend Writing Warriors challenge and it’s a lot of fun!

In other news:

  • Had a hot writing date with the fabulous Parker Kincaid on Saturday, and got the scoop on what’s been happening with her Shadow Maverick Ranch cowboys – all I can say is it sounds yummy!
  • Received print copies of novella bundles submitted for RITA award consideration. The Last First Date in print and with the Harlequin logo on the cover. I might have geeked out just a little.
  • I’ve started my tenures as President of the Diamond State Romance Authors and Vice President of Passionate Ink RWA, so I will soon be a Google Hangouts master.
  • The not-so-new-anymore day job continues to be a vast improvement in terms of mental/physical health as well as general happiness.
  • Took Fodder to pick out his first-ever pair of prescription eyeglasses. Don’t be surprised if you start seeing some hot professor types popping up in my work.

Other than that, I’ve been spending a lot of time on Netflix, but I’ll save that for Fangirl Friday. I’ve also started a book I’ve been waiting for, but that falls under Whatcha Reading Wednesday, so I’ll just ask…What have you been up to?

 

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