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Where was I?

I went to update my newsletter signup form on this site and discovered I’ve been missing for months. I wish I had a good excuse, but really, I don’t.

Like many of you, I’ve stayed home this summer. The summer trip to national parks and visit colleges in the Pacific Northwest didn’t happen. The hubs and I will celebrate our 25th anniversary with a meal at home with the kids because we won’t risk anyone’s health by having a grandparent or child cross state lines. A Target run is about as exotic as it gets this summer. But these are minor inconveniences.

So I didn’t blog this summer. But I did read, write, and edit. I’m finalizing a Christmas themed romance that will come out in the fall. Newsletter subscribers will get a special cover preview and access to early-bird pricing. This upcoming book was my escape this summer and I hope it will be yours.

Wishing you and your loved ones good health and peace.

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Invisible Stagnation

You may have noticed I haven’t been blogging much lately, but probably not. I’ve wanted to keep this blog an upbeat sort of space and in terms of writing news, I haven’t had a whole lot to share. The same goes for social media, which I’ve been on less and less lately. And when I do post or share, the algorithms work against infrequent posts.

I’m becoming invisible. There is a risk of stagnation – of not doing more because it’s not like anyone cares but me. Except I don’t think that’s the case. I have to consider what is the best use of my time.

I have read a lot of books on marketing, plotting, character development, the writing process, and algorithms. Reading and posting on social media won’t get the book written, revised, and ready for publication. I may be a faint shimmer by the time I reemerge, but I’m going to fight disappearing altogether.

And in case I haven’t said it enough lately, I appreciate you. You are wonderful.

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Sports Romance

Can’t get enough of Sport Romance? Try these.

Christa Maurice

Love means saying you’re sorry, and proving it.

Sonny Black was the star quarterback in high school who couldn’t possibly be in love with the geekiest girl in school, Mandy Daws. He’d been seeing her under the guise of chemistry tutoring, but when his buddies found out there was a little more going on, he lied and said she was a slut, wrecking her life and earning her enduring hatred.

Eleven years later, Sonny is headed for the Super Bowl despite amazing bad luck that has earned him the nickname Sonny Black Cloud. When someone mentions that the bad luck must stem from someone he failed in the past, the first name that comes to mind is Mandy’s. He tracks her down at the small university where she teaches chemistry and tries to seduce, beg or win her forgiveness, and he needs it before the Super Bowl.

Amazon : Barnes…

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Posted in Environment, Family life, Uncategorized

Kicking the plastic habit

Ever since a stint living in Germany in the 1990s, I’ve tried to be thoughtful about my use of plastic. Twenty years ago, cashiers didn’t know what to do when I brought my own love_birds_2pkreusable bags to stores. One even called a manager! Could you imagine that happening in 2018? I average one case of plastic bottled water a year. I do keep some in the house (and in the car) in case of emergency, but I never drink it at home (unless there is a drinking water emergency) and I rarely buy water out because I use a refillable water bottle. I buy resealable plastic bags for school supply lists, but lunchboxes I use these sandwich bags and other refillable containers.

With China’s announcement that they will no longer accept the world’s plastic for recycling, I’m looking for more plastic alternatives.  I’ll share a few things I currently do, a few changes I’ve started to implement, and a few wishes. I’d love to know how YOU reduce plastic.

WHAT I DO (in addition to those above):hk048-sap

  1. refuse straws
  2. use glass containers for storage
  3. skip plastic in home decor items
  4. seek out clothing and other fabrics made from recycled water bottles. If you are in the market for a new purse or backpack, I love Haiku bags. I recently bought a second one – not because the first wore out, but because after 6 years, I wanted a different pattern.
  5. shop the farmer’s markets. Less packaging = less plastic.


  1. Switching back to bar soap. This one hurts. I love body wash and hate slimy soap, but I love our planet enough that I’m giving up the bottle.
  2. Bamboo toothbrushes.

MY WISH LIST: (Can you help?)

  1. Alternative to plastic wrap in the kitchen. I want something to protect oddly shaped food (say cut avocados) from the air and to cover bowls of rising bread dough.
  2. A peanut and tree-nut allergy safe place for buying food in bulk. Every single place I’ve seen has potential for cross contamination and I won’t risk my daughter’s life.
  3. plastic free toothpaste.
  4. Lip balm in non-plastic container.
  5. antiperspirant in non-plastic container.

I would love to hear ideas and suggestions from you. How do you reduce plastic in your life? I’m on the lookout for new ideas.

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Happy Book Birthday to me!

Facebook reminded me that two years ago, Bad Traveler debuted. While it never hit the Bad-Traveler300x450Amazon top 100, I’m amazed how often Bad Traveler appears as a category top 50 seller. I love that readers keep discovering Bad Traveler. Seriously, you readers make me happy.

bookbirthdayswagYou know what else makes me happy? Swag. Who doesn’t love free stuff, especially books, pens, coasters and more? To celebrate my book birthday, I have a Rafflecopter.  My giveaway will include these items, plus whatever else I can fit in the box for domestic shipping (P.S. – this is open to US residents only).

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Now, if you’ll excuse me, I need to bake a birthday cake. Any suggestions which type?

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First Friday: Inventions I love

I missed the First Friday in July because I was traveling to Jamaica and there is nothing like travel to make you appreciate the little things in life. Here are five modern inventions I love and don’t want to live without.

  1. Air Conditioning. Pools are a good way to cool off, but air conditioning is better and it doesn’t make your skin all pruney.
  2. Rolling suitcases. Two wheels are good, four are better, especially when they can pivot in any direction.
  3. Sunscreen. Sunburns are painful. Sunscreen lets those of us who’ve been called “Casper the friendly ghost” get outside and enjoy fun activities like ocean kayaking, water slides and a bobsled ride in the rain forest.
  4. WiFi.
  5. I was going to say airplanes, but then a friend shared this post, so number 5 is the Epipen.

sunset photoJamaica was beautiful. Beaches Ocho Rios offered my family delicious food, terrific hospitality and no end of activities. I still haven’t figured out how to upload the underwater photos I took when I went snorkeling for the first time, so this photo of a sunset will have to suffice.

I’m headed off to the Romance Writers of America next week. If you’re in San Diego on Wednesday, July 13th, I hope to see you at the “Readers for Life” Literacy Autographing. I won’t be signing, but I will be at the check-out so stop by and say hi. I may even have goodies.


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I won!

I have to share the adorable award I won for my pre-published mainstream fiction with romantic elements, tentatively titled “Can’t Go Home.” Rudy G M

I took home the 2016 Rudy sponsored by Chesapeake Romance Writers.  I’m thrilled this manuscript was honored in such a way. I hope to find a publishing home for it by the end of the year.

Writing a book is a lot of work and can take years from concept to print. The author often doesn’t know if readers will enjoy a story as they write, which is why this award is so meaningful to me. I cannot wait to find out if the rest of you enjoy this book as much as I do and the Rudy judges did.

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Spotlight on The Hookup Hoax

Heather Thurmeier returns to the spotlight and I couldn’t be happier. For a happily ever after with enough humor and heat to melt a kindle,  Heather is my go-to gal.  Today she’s sharing her latest, The Hookup Hoax.


The perfect guy. The perfect girl. The perfect lie.

Sawyer Sterling needs a girlfriend. With the family cabin up for grabs, he’s desperate to prove that he could be the guy to “pass it on.” Of course, Sawyer also has a tendency to treat relationships like a contagious stomach flu that should be avoided at all costs. Now he needs a girlfriend-for-hire. Someone he can trust. Someone he could never, ever fall for…

Someone like his best friend’s sister.

Sawyer’s offer is exactly what Olivia Morgan needs. After traveling around the world for the last five years, the promise of a job and free accommodations is heaven. And sure, maybe Sawyer’s a super-hot, charming guy with dimples made for kissing, but he’s not willing to be the guy—or relationship—she needs.

All it takes is one hot hook-up before this little hoax gets blown all to hell…

If that isn’t enough to make you run to the closest virtual book store, enjoy this little excerpt.

Turning her back to Sawyer, she opened the cabinet and reached up to the middle shelf. She never really thought of herself as short until she had to perch on the balls of her feet to reach something, feeling the stretch through her entire body, like a yoga instructor. Just as her hand circled the glass, a cool breeze blew across her right butt cheek.

Her exposed right butt cheek.

Why did I wear a thong today? Couldn’t I take two seconds to put on pants?

Quickly, she lowered her arm. As she did, the soft cotton of her nightshirt slid back over her rear, covering her. She swallowed hard.

Did he see? Please be looking anywhere else…

She turned, gripping her newly acquired glass.

His gaze hit her right around the tops of her thighs then slowly traveled up the length of her body before settling on her eyes. Every nerve ending came to life under his scrutiny. His jaw muscle bulged as if he was clenching his teeth.

Oh, he saw. Everything.

“I…” she said, then closed her eyes while trying to think of something appropriate to say. Sorry I just flashed you my ass? Thongs, huh? Can’t depend on them for coverage!

She bit her lower lip and forced her eyes open. She was a big girl. Surely she could face a minor awkward moment head on. Olivia met his gaze while pulling a quivering breath into her tight lungs.


“I’m going to bed,” he said quickly, holding her gaze. His eyes sparkled in the bright kitchen lights, like the sun reflecting off the ocean. “I have an early meeting. Tomorrow, I’ll get everything sorted out for your new job and bring home any paperwork you need to fill out. You can start first thing next week, okay?” He stared at her for a moment before pushing off the counter and walking out of the room with what she thought was a sigh.

Could’ve been a quiet groan.

“Thank you,” she called weakly after him, thrilled for the change in topic, and for his chivalrous behavior concerning her wardrobe malfunction… until she realized that not only had her platonic, fake-boyfriend and roommate just seen her naked ass cheek—so had her new boss.


Heather Thurmeier is a lover of strawberry margaritas, a hater of spiders and a reality TV junkie. Born and raised in the Canadian prairies, she now lives in New York with her husband and kids where she’s become some kind of odd Canuck-Yankee hybrid. When she’s not busy taking care of the kids and pets, Heather’s writing her next romance, which will probably be filled with sassy heroines, sexy heroes that make your heart pound, laugh out loud moments and always a happily ever after. She loves to hear from readers on social media and her website at!

You can find The Hookup Hoax at THH_500-2