Sunday, November 30, 2014

Do You Remember the Day?

My husband is taking over my blog, so be sure to leave a comment.  Here he is, my honey, Ron Marshall.  Smile!  It's all yours.  I may add a few comments here and there just to spice it up a bit.   

I can remember some (just some) years back when television was not on 24/7. I would watch TV in the evenings until it went off the air around midnight, TV back then signed off the air with the Star-spangled Banner song. (That was a really long time ago. They had rabbit ears then.)
Television with Rabbit Ears

Also, I remember there were only a couple of  advertisements in a thirty minute program. Now, I wonder how many people watch TV today and wonder where the hell all of those advertisements come from.  I can change channels to several different stations, and the odds of finding another advertisement is almost guaranteed. To me the odds are pretty damn good you are going to get a commercial everywhere you go.  (I understand your frustration, honey.)

I understand they need to make revenue but every 5 or maybe 10 minutes, if you are lucky. When they first talked about cable TV coming it was rumored that they would be commercial free. I just wonder why we pay so much money for cable or whatever means we get our programming to watch nothing but commercials.

So many commercials are trying to sell you medications, and you have to ask your doctor if a certain med will cure you. They warn you on the advertisement the side effects could be heart attack, liver problems, internal bleeding, swelling of your joints, etc..  There is always a disclaimer, and it goes on and on. Why would you even consider taking a medication with so may side effects.  It scares the hell out of you to take anything.  (You are right, honey, and not only that many medications make you feel dizzy and off-balance.)

Another commercial is for quick car loans with no questions asked.  hahahahahha  Well I was just wondering if you remember, I sure do. 

Well, that's it from my husband this time.    He just had to rant. 

Have a good week, and I'll see you next Sunday. 

Sandra K. Marshall, Author
@ Eirelander Publishing

Sunday, November 23, 2014

My Favorite Pumpkin Bread Recipe

The holidays are upon us with Thanksgiving this Thursday.  It's the time of year to express thanks for being lucky to have a roof over our heads and food in our bellies.  When you think of all the people in the world who don't have these things then you know you're fortunate. 

This is the time of year I do all my baking.  When I used to work at TWA, I always took cookies and bread every in for everyone as my gift to my co-workers.  It's time to make sugar cookies, chocolate chips, oatmeal cookies, Christmas balls with pecans, date cookies, pumpkin bread, banana nut bread and many more.  Years ago I even made pop corn balls, but not anymore.  Too much work!  Even some of the other things have fallen by the wayside. 

One thing I do make is pumpkin bread.  It's not the traditional pumpkin bread that looks like mustard.  My pumpkin bread is rich and dark, which means it's mysterious, but I'm going to give you the recipe today.  However, I have to warn you it is rich and has a ton of calories, but you'll love it.  To make it all you do is dump all the ingredients in a bowl like a dump cake.  Simple!

Pumpkin Bread
3 1/2 cups flour                                  3 cups sugar
3 t soda                                               1 cup Crisco oil
1 1/2 t salt                                           4 eggs
1 t cinnamon                                       1/3 cup water
1 t nutmeg                                           1 can pumpkin (16 oz)
1 t ginger                                             2 t vanilla
1 t cloves                                             1 cup black walnuts

Use 1 pd. coffee cans or bread pans, grease and fill half full.  Depending on the size of bread pans you'll get three loaves.  I sometimes make the miniature loaves, and then I can get five or six loaves.  Bake at 350 degrees for one hour for large loaves.  Be sure to check with a toothpick because it could take longer and it will take less time with smaller loaves. 

It makes a huge difference if you use English walnuts instead of black walnuts.  It changes the flavor.  Also, I have added raisins, but not often because I like this recipe just like it is. 

Happy Thanksgiving everyone!  Have a great and safe holiday, and I'll see you again next Sunday. 

Sandra K. Marshall, Author
@Eirelander Publishing

Sunday, November 16, 2014

Best Selling Author, Suz deMello Explains What You Need and Don't Need in a Book

Please welcome, author, Suz deMello and learn how to write a romance.  This talented author can give you a lot of tips if you're a beginning writer, or even a published author. 

About the Author:

Best-selling, award-winning author Suz deMello, a.k.a Sue Swift, has written seventeen romance novels in several subgenres, including erotica, comedy, historical, paranormal, mystery and suspense, plus a number of short stories and non-fiction articles on writing. A freelance editor, she’s held the positions of managing editor and senior editor, working for such firms as Totally Bound and Ai Press. She also takes private clients.


Her books have been favorably reviewed in Publishers Weekly, Kirkus and Booklist, won a contest or two, attained the finals of the RITA and hit several bestseller lists.

A former trial attorney, her passion is world travel. She’s left the US over a dozen times, including lengthy stints working overseas. She’s now writing a vampire tale and planning her next trip.

Check out Suzie's site:

And her blog:

A few words about writing sex scenes by Suz deMello (#NaNoWriMo #iamwriting #writingcraft @MFRW_ORG)

From my writing treatise, Plotting and Planning, available at

My first writing treatise, Write This, Not That! is free through 2014:     kobo  google

 Scenes are the building blocks of your story, for acts are comprised of scenes. They're nothing more than events, most often interactions between your characters. Scenes should fulfill at least one or two of the below purposes—best if you can include all four.

•Advance plot

•Reveal or develop character

•Complicate or resolve conflict

•Express setting, mood, theme

Everything in your manuscript should have a function, even every comma or em-dash.

How does this apply to the writing of erotica?

Too often, sex scenes are shoehorned into a story to increase the word count or the heat level, while those scenes don't fulfill any other function. To quote from Plotting and Planning again, Everything in a story should contribute to it, from the biggest monster to the tiniest comma.

If a scene doesn't contribute to the story, it doesn't belong there. It doesn't matter how well-written it is. It doesn't matter how hot it is. It doesn't matter how much you, the author, may love the beautiful prose or the scorching hot, kinky sex.

There's a piece of writerly advice out there: Kill your darlings.

No one's quite sure where this phrase originated, but it's been repeated often, by such notable authors as William Faulkner and Stephen King.

But it doesn't matter who originated the phrase--it's great advice. We often fall in love with our prose and are loath to cut it, especially when we may have slaved over a particularly well-turned clause or exhaustively researched, say, the eating habits of the lesser lemur of Madagascar.

But fiction is no place to be a smarty-pants. Leave that for term papers, book reports and theses.

In terms of writing sex scenes, what do we leave in and what do we cut?

We leave in those scenes that fulfill at least one of the above purposes. Ideally, a well-written, thoughtfully planned encounter will fulfill more than one purpose.

Here's a brief example, from a story I wrote called Gypsy Witch. The back story is that the heroine is dating a cop.

Ben propped himself up on his elbows to better see the naked woman beneath him. Sheened with sweat, Elena’s lush curves glowed in the reddish half-light of her bedroom, curtained in exotically patterned swaths of gauze and silk. A curl of smoke from a lit incense stick scented the air with sandalwood. Otherworldly New Age music flowed out of a boombox in the corner, irritating the hell out of him.

Though the paragraph is very sensual, there’s quite a bit of characterization and even a little conflict—and this is only the first paragraph of the story. We see that Ben is very “feet-on-the-ground” while Elena, his lover, is exotic and New-Agey. So character is described, setting is related and the romantic conflict is shown.

If you like what you read, find the story here:

As a romance novelist, I believe firmly that erotic scenes should never be gratuitous. If a writer keeps the purposes a scene must fulfill in mind while writing, the sex is never out of place but is a seamless part of a well-written story.

Thank you, Suz, for being here today.  I'm sure all of my readers including myself have learned a lot from you.

If anyone has any questions of Suz be sure to ask them in the comment section.  Be sure to check out Suz's website at and her blog at

Suz, thank you for visiting my blog today.  I've enjoyed learning from you. 

Have a great week, and I'll be back on my blog next Sunday.


Sunday, November 9, 2014

Veteran's Day

Tuesday is Veteran's Day, so please don't forget our soldiers away from home as well as here.  Our men and women in the armed services overseas are lonely and homesick, so if you have someone fighting for us in another country be sure to write to them and send them packages from home.  As the holidays approach it will be even worse for these young people so please, please write weekly to your family members and others.

So many of our young soldiers suffer horrible injuries both mentally and physically, so be sure not to forget them when they come home.  If you can, donate to Wounded Warriors at

It's the Soldier, not the reporter Who has given us the freedom of the press.

It's the Soldier, not the poet, Who has given us the freedom of speech.

It's the Soldier, not the politicians that ensures Our right to Life, Liberty and the Pursuit of

It's the Soldier who salutes the flag, Who serves beneath the flag, And whose coffin is draped by the flag.
Author Unknown

For those who can't donate monetary or time to help our veterans just click daily on this site and you can help them.

Thank you for reading, have a great week, and I'll see you next Sunday. 

Sandra K. Marshall, Author
@ Eirelander Publishing
Twitter - @AuthSKMarshall

Sunday, November 2, 2014

Contest ! Contest!

Romance Books 4 Us is having another contest this month and below is a list of the prizes being offered. 

1. Two $50 Gift Cards - one each for two winners.
2. $10 Gift Card for Secret Cravings Publishing for SCP.
3. Choice of ebook from backlist books by romance author Tina Donahue.
4. Ebook of winner's choice from backlist books by romance author Jean Hart Stewart.
5. Kindle copy of Belle's Band by romance author Alina K. Field.
6. E-copy of Tidal Falls by romance author Jacquie Biggar.
7. Christmas ornaments (Texas theme) from romance author Desiree Holt.
8. Ebook of winner's choice from backlist of romance author JC Szot.
9. PDF copy of Do You Take This Cat by romance author Missy Martine.
10.Ebook of The Silk Tie by romance author Lily Harlem.
11.Signed paperback of Christmas At The Cove by romance author Rachel Brimble.
12. Paperback copy of The Rover Bold by romance author Anna Markland.
13.A Thanksgiving digital swag bag including Starbucks Gift Card, ebook copy of Scents and Sensuality and Ebook copy of Written Wisdom by romance author Joan Reeves.
14.E-copy of Romancing Christmas by romance author Sandy Loyd.
15. Kindle copy of When We Dance by romance author Alanna Lucas.
16.Ebook of winner's choice from books (including Snow Angel) by romance author Chantilly White.
17.A bag of Christmas decorations and an e-copy of The Catalyst by romance author Sandra K. Marshall.
18.Tote of Scottish goodies: books, mug, mouse pad, shirt, etc., from romance author/model A.B. McKinley.

17.A bag of Christmas decorations and an e-copy of The Catalyst by romance author DD
Details on how to enter the contest go to

Good luck with the contest everyone. 

Have a great week, and I'll see you next Sunday.

Sandra K. Marshall, Author
@ Eirelander Publishing