Sunday, November 29, 2009

Holiday Contest

Hi Everyone,

I'm having a contest for the month of December. It will start December 1st through December 31st. Won't it be fun to receive a present in the mail after Christmas? I would love it myself. lol

Here's what you have to do. There are two questions to answer: 1. Give description of young woman at the Regional Laboratory. 2. What did the tautness of Jake's arms tell Jolene?

The answers can be found at http://www.skaymarshall.com/ and at http://www.eirelander-publishing.com/ by reading both excerpts of ADDICTION.

Remember the answers can't be posted until Tuesday, December 1st. For those who want to leave an answer but don't know how just use anonymous and put your name under the comment.

Good luck.

See you next Sunday.

Sandy

Sunday, November 22, 2009

Me and the Author

My name is Sandy, and as an author, I write under the name of Sandra K. Marshall. Under my fa├žade of laughter and fun, I’m mostly a serious person; therefore you’ll find that most of my stories deal with serious issues.

As a child, I often wondered about people and what their lives were like. For instance, in the eighth grade, I often watched a friend of mine and wondered what she was thinking as she stared out the window. There was something about her that caused me to worry about her even though I didn’t know why. She was a cheerleader and very popular, but she was very kind and not one of the mean cheerleaders you hear about today. We moved to another town that year, and I learned a few months later that Barbara had been diagnosed with Leukemia. Had she known? I believe she had a premonition that she might not be on this earth long.

Going back to that small town for holidays, I would call Barbara to talk to her, and she would talk about her visits to the hospital for treatments. The last time I talked to her I could tell that it might be the last one, and I was right. A couple of days later she was taken to the hospital and did not come home. Her family distraught over their loss moved away a year or two later.

When I started working for an airline in 1962, after a couple of years of spreading my wings and having fun, I decided there were more important things to do than have fun. I thought about the type of volunteer work I would like to do and decided I wanted to work with orphans. Not knowing of any orphanages, I looked them up in the telephone book and found one not to far from where I was living, east of main street. I called to make an appointment to visit, and when I went there I learned it was an all black orphanage. The man who ran the orphanage asked if it made a difference to me. I said, “no” as I’d had a close black friend in high school.

I got involved with reading programs at the orphanage, took the girls on excursions to movies and museums in an attempt to show them there was more out there than what they had experienced so far. I was able to teach these kids a lot, but they knew so much more than I did in certain areas of life. Many of these kids had been abused sexually, beaten physically and mentally. These kids didn’t open up immediately; in fact they challenged me, wanting to know why a white girl would come into their lives. All I could tell them was that I was meant to be with them for a time.

It turned out to be a short time too, because not many months after that the riots started in our city. One day after they started I was at the orphanage, the guy who ran it pulled me aside to tell me, he didn’t want me to come back. He felt it was too dangerous, and he couldn’t be responsible for me. I had had a good day with the girls and didn’t want to tell them good-bye, so I told him I would be back one more time in order to explain to the girls why I wouldn’t be working with them any more. However, I never got a chance to explain because of something that happened when I left there.

At a stop sign, a few blocks from the orphanage, a group of men stood on the corner with angry faces. They started toward me and a couple of guys started pushing my car, and I hurriedly stepped on the pedal and took off. Some of them chased me, and it made me fearful to go back.
(One of these days, I'm going to blog about something pertaining to this section of my post, but it's controversial and though it's on my mind I've been putting it off. I'm sorry for being such a chicken).

None of these things have deterred me from wanting to do something to help others. Now, in my stories, I hope some day to make a difference. I will always write about topics that concern me.

Okay folks, you’ve learned a little more about what makes me tick. Have a good week, and I’ll see you next Sunday.

Remember as always, all comments are welcome even if you disagree with any of my opinions.

Sandy
http://www.YouTube.com/watch?v=e684nldayz0

Saturday, November 14, 2009

ADDICTION Trailer

Hi Everyone,

Today, you get to see the Trailer I intend to put on YouTube. I admit that I didn't make this video, instead a very good friend, Willie Arrowood made it for me. She doesn't know it, but I'm already thinking of another for her to make. lol Thank you, Willie, for doing this for me. Monster hug for you. Smile.

Just click on the lower left corner of the video to see the trailer. I hope all of you enjoy my video and it makes you want to read ADDICTION.

Until next Sunday, have a good week.

Sandy

Sunday, November 8, 2009

Author, Linda LaRoque



Hello Everyone,

Welcome my good friend, guest, author, Linda LaRoque. Waving at Linda. I am glad to have you here today, and I’m loaded with questions.


Response: Hi Sandy. I’m waving back at you. Thank you for having me as your guest.


SM: Linda, how does your family and friends feel about your writing? Do they support you?


LL: They’re happy for me and very supportive. They like to tease me about knowing me before I was rich and famous. Haha. We beginning authors know we spend more money than we make. Hopefully one day the reverse will be true.


Question: When did you first start writing?


Answer: I didn’t start until the early 1990s. At the time I was suffering from depression and writing was therapeutic for me. Later, after reading a romance I said to my husband, “I think I could write a romance. It can’t be that hard.” Boy, I ate those words over and over again. Writing romance is as hard as writing any other genre and requires learning and practice.


Question: Are you writing in more than one genre?


Answer: Yes. I write contemporary western romances, time-travel romances, and am in the process of finishing a futuristic romance.


Question: Tell us a bit about your story.


Answer: Flames On The Sky is book two of The Turquoise Legacy. In book one, My Heart Will Find Yours, Texanna owns a locket containing a mystical piece of turquoise. In book two, heroine Madison Evans inherits the locket and begins having bad dreams about being chased by Indians in a past time period. To learn the stone’s origin, Madison travels to New Mexico and learns she’s part of an ancient prophecy to capture an escaped evil spirit determined on destroying the Native American heritage in the Four Corners area.


Question: Most of your stories that I have read are pretty sweet, do you plan to write something grittier or steamier?


Answer: Flames On The Sky, as are all of my The Wild Rose Press releases, is rated spicy. My western contemporaries at Champagne Books are rated sensual. I doubt I’ll write anything with hot or erotic ratings, but you never know.


Question: Do you find sex scenes hard to write?

Yes, I do. I think it’s hard to write them where they don’t read stilted or mechanical.

Linda, would you give us a blurb and an excerpt of your story?

Blurb:

The Anasazi whispered of this evil and of the
woman who could defeat it.
Fire, sky, and stone must unite to fulfill an ancient prophecy.


Madison Evans inherits a turquoise locket, travels to New Mexico, and discovers the stone dates back to the Chacoan Anasazi. When she's attacked, parks ranger Lonan Stone, of Chacoan ancestry, fears Madison's turquoise is a missing twin of the revered Fallen Skystone, an egg size piece of turquoise on display in Albuquerque. The mystical stone is missing two slivers – one’s in Madison’s necklace, the others whereabouts unknown, but if united by evil they can destroy.

Madison and Lonan are part of a 1000 year old prophecy to save Chaco Canyon. Thrust back in time, they meet a witch, solve a murder, fall in love, and imprison a 1000 year old evil spirit. Their mission complete, can these two people from different cultures blend their lives as the prophecy predicted?


Excerpt:

Madison felt as if she’d traveled to the Twilight Zone. Lilly’s claims were preposterous, but, she couldn’t deny what she’d seen on the cliff face or the dreams.
“Yes, you need to tell me about the dreams. They started at the time you received the necklace, right?”
Madison nodded. “How did you know?”
“I assumed the ancient Elders would haunt you, but when Lonan called yesterday, I knew so for a fact.” Her smile was sympathetic. “Tell me about them.”
Lilly’s eyes lit with excitement as Madison talked. When she finished, the older woman leaned back and closed her eyes.
Lonan’s brow was furrowed, his mouth pinched. “What did you mean when you said, ‘You are the one.’?”
She pierced him with an intent look. “Did not Madison say you were the very image of the warrior in her dream? The prophecy requires that someone from the past, which is you, son, be chosen to be Madison’s protector.” Lilly turned to Madison.
Oh, no. I don’t think I want to hear this. She held up her hands and shook her head. “No—”
“Yes, Madison, with hair of fire, whether you like it or not, the Gods chose you, someone from the future, to find the third stone and reunite the twins with the mother stone. Together, you two will find a way to consign the evil one to the pit below mother earth where he belongs.”

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tghS1kr6TnY Flames on The Sky



Question: How did you come up with the idea for this story, Linda?


Answer: The piece of turquoise in Texanna’s locket had mystical abilities. I decided one of her ancestors would inherit the locket and need to discover where the turquoise originated. In my research I learned much of the turquoise in the United States came from a region of New Mexico, and that the Anasazi in Chaco Canyon had a monopoly on its trade. From these facts the story evolved.


I remember Texanna's story and loved it. Flames on the Sky sounds just as good. I'm eager to read it.

Question: Do you write at the same time every day, or do you just fit writing in when you can? What is your schedule like?


Answer: I spend time in the morning checking emails, loops, and blogs. Then I begin writing. I write until around 3:00. Sometimes I write in the evenings and am often at my most creative late at night.


Question: Do you make an outline before you begin writing or do you just come up with an idea and get started?

Answer: I usually get an idea and start writing but at some point I write a short outline to check for story elements, conflict, etc. Character profiles also help me to flesh out the hero and heroine.

Linda, tell everyone when your book will be released and where it can be found.


Answer:

Flames On The Sky is out now with The Wild Rose Press.

http://www.thewildrosepress.com/flames-on-the-sky-p-3719.html?zenid=5067b73fa46f73c5584271aaab612fef ebook

http://www.thewildrosepress.com/flames-on-the-sky-paperback-p-3678.html paperback.

And at Amazon.com

http://www.amazon.com/Flames-Sky-Linda-LaRoque/dp/1601545827/ref=pd_nr_b_21?ie=UTF8&s=books in paperback.


Linda, it's been great having you here today, but I know you're eager to get back to writing your next story. I wish you much success with your career.


Response: Thank you for having me, Sandy. I appreciate the opportunity to share Flames On The Sky with you and your readers. Good luck with your new release Addiction. Happy Sales! You know I’ll be getting my copy.

Linda
Linda LaRoque ~Western Romance with a Twist in Time~ A Law of Her Own, Desires of the Heart, My Heart Will Find Yours, Flames on the Sky10-9, Forever Faithful, Investment of the Heart, When the Ocotillo Bloom

www.lindalaroque.com/ www.lindalaroqueauthor.blogspot.com/


Have a great week everyone. I’ll be back next Sunday.


Sandy

Thursday, November 5, 2009

Yay! ADDICTION is Released Today

Hey Everyone,

That's right! Today is the release date for ADDICTION. You can buy it at http://www.eirelander-publishing.com/ as an ebook.

If you would like to read an excerpt go to my website http://www.skaymarshall.com/ or go to my publisher's site for their excerpt.

To help celebrate my day, I'm having a contest with a surprise prize to the lucky person who can answer this question.

At the shooting range, how many shots did Jolene fire? Now, of course, it's in one of those excerpts I told you about. lol

Sandra K. Marshall, Author

Sunday, November 1, 2009

Halloween: A Night of Evil, or a Night of Fun.

You wouldn’t think trick or treating would be such a controversial topic, but it is among many. I’m going to give a bit of history for background here.

Halloween’s origins are believed to date back 2000 years ago when the Celts celebrated their new year on November 1st. On October 31st, they celebrated Samhain, a night that they believed the ghosts of the dead returned to earth. These ghosts were believed to cause havoc upon the land during this night. Supposedly, these spirits made it easier for Celtic priests to make predictions about the future. They would build bonfires to offer sacrifices of crops and the weaker animals that might not survive the winter. During the ceremony, the Celts wore costumes consisting of animal heads and skins, and told each other their fortunes. They may have used people as sacrifices, but I don’t believe this is confirmed. I will add that this is a very simplified version of what may have happened.
(Article by Diana Windgassen: The History of Halloween)

Some people believe that Halloween evolved out of the Catholic holiday called All Hallows Eve, which occurs before All Saints Day, a general celebration of the saints on November 1st. However, All Saints Day was originally celebrated on May 13, and in the Orthodox Church it continues that tradition. Pope Gregory III is credited with moving it in the 9th century to November 1st. Many Christians who are against Halloween celebrations believe that All Saints Day was moved to co-opt a Celtic Irish celebration call Samhain. The connection between these two celebrations is that Samhain placated or honored the dead and All Saints Day celebrates dead saints. This is the cause of much debate. (Is Halloween Christian, Pagan or Secular by Catherine Beyer)

Many Christians believe that we embrace and evil day of Satan when we celebrate Halloween. There are quotes from the Bible that testify to this. I could give you way more history on this, and I admit the topic of Halloween is a complicated one.

My question to all of you is do you think Halloween is evil or fun innocence?

Here is my take on Halloween: This holiday has been diluted regardless of whether its intent was to be evil or good. It has become a hodge-podge of traditions, and I believe we have made Halloween a different tradition from the originals ones. Evil is rampant everywhere in this world, and it’s there day or night. Yes, there’s more evil on Halloween night, but that’s because anyone can wear a costume and hide their true identity.

It’s fun for our little boys to dress up as super heroes and princesses, or anything they want to be. Heck, it is fun for all of us to masquerade once in a while.

I’ll be eager to hear the comments today. Grin.

Until next Sunday, have a great week.

Sandy