Mountain Laurel Christmas On Tour – Day 7! #ShortStory #Christmas #FamilyDrama #Music

Climb in the wagon with me. We’re off to another stop on this short tour!

You may need a blanket for our next journey as we are heading up north to Michigan for a visit with Beem Weeks!

I first met Beem when I joined a book club way back in 2015. His was one of the first books I picked up and read as a part of that club. I have never forgotten Jazz Baby! It made me an instant fan of this talented writer!

Here is just a short excerpt from my review and it really does sum it up:

This novel is written in the style of Faulkner or Steinbeck, revealing torrid secrets that we all prefer to remain hidden. Touching on social issues that beg to remain in the shadows, Beem Weeks has done a great job weaving this tale. The southern dialect is written to perfection and I could see and hear the characters as they spoke. If you like a story that keeps you guessing and makes you gasp a few times, then you’ll like this coming-of-age story about Emily Ann “Baby” Teegarten. How was this going to end for the poverty-stricken southern girl with a gift? Baby Teegarten can sing!

I have often referred to Beem Weeks as the master of “show don’t tell.” He has a way of drawing a strong visual with his words and unique writing style. He has written numerous short stories and has several releases newer than Jazz Baby, but it was that book that made me a forever fan.

BEEM WEEKS AMAZON AUTHOR PAGE

If you are a fan of short stories, as I am, Beem has a diverse variety to offer, including some posted on his website.

For more from Beem Weeks, click HERE!

Grab a book from Beem, then head on over to his blog where we are talking about my newest release, Mountain Laurel Christmas!

Leave a comment, share, and enter to win my Blog Tour Giveaway!

Beem Weeks Blog Tour Stop

Mountain Laurel Christmas On Tour – Day 6! #ShortStory #Christmas #FamilyDrama #Music

Climb in the wagon with me. We’re off to another stop on this short tour!

Today we are taking this magical gypsy wagon on a short jaunt over to East Texas for a visit with Joan Hall!

Joan is a fellow Texas author and a Story Empire contributor. She is best known for writing mystery and romantic suspense, but one of my favorite things from Joan is her informative and entertaining monthly blog posts about the Moon. If that interests you, click HERE to catch up on all of them.

She introduced us to the Legend of Madeira Series this year and both the short story introduction and first novel are outstanding stories!

PURCHASE LINK

MY REVIEW:

I read the prequel to this first story, “House of Sorrow” in the Legends of Madeira Series, and couldn’t wait to read more of the story. I was not disappointed! Is it possible that a house can be cursed? Or is it the job that is cursed? When Tami and Jason move to New Mexico for Jason to start his new job as Police Chief of Madeira, they become embroiled in a deadly mystery that seemingly haunts the victorian mansion they purchased. Two unsolved murders a century apart seem oddly connected and Tami is determined to find the answers and break the curse that threatens to destroy their new life. The author went back and forth between the time periods, the two murders, and the present. At times I was confused about the people and places, but the author wrapped it all up in a satisfying ending with lots of plot twists and layering along the way. I was not able to guess the identity of the murderer among the list of suspects, so it came as a surprise when the identity was revealed along with the reasons behind the grisly acts. I love how the author brought the influence of the moon cycles into the story and how it played an integral part in the unfolding. This is a story filled with action, memorable characters, and small-town drama. If you love a good mystery, you will enjoy this story!

To see more of Joan’s work, visit HERE!

Grab a book or two from this talented author, then head on over to the blog tour.

Leave a comment, share, and enter to win my Blog Tour Giveaway!

Joan Hall’s Blog Tour Stop

Mountain Laurel Christmas On Tour – Day 5! #ShortStory #Christmas #FamilyDrama #Music

Climb in the wagon with me. We’re off to another stop on this short tour!

Our next stop is at Staci Troilo’s place in Pennsylvania, USA!

Staci is not only a prolific award-winning author, but also an award-winning recipe developer. And she is a fellow Story Empire contributor. She has a Master’s Degree in professional writing and I am in awe of her expertise. She has written everything from short stories to lengthy series, from sci-fi to romance, and each piece reflects her diversity.

Her most recent release is a short story romance that I absolutely adored! It is Book 1 in the Keystone Couples Series. I loved the humor and realism in this story. The characters are relatable as are the situations.

PURCHASE LINK

MY REVIEW:

In this short story, Piper has been fired from yet another job. And on top of being fired, she lost her good luck charm, a dried red chrysanthemum. Now she’s sure her luck is forever going to be bad. She returns to her father’s home early for the Christmas holidays and immediately bumps into an old crush from high school. And she struggles to form words, which is ironic considering she writes words for a living. But Tommy Burnett affects her that way. He’s handsome, a great catch, and everything she’s dreamed of. I won’t give any spoilers here, but Jack Rhodes, her best friend since grade school is her steady influence. When she needs help, he’s always there and never asks for anything in return. I love how Piper grew in the pages of this short read. Sometimes the obvious is right under our noses and we fail to see it. This is an entertaining holiday read that is short and sweet with a satisfying ending. The writing is flawless and I highly recommend it.

For more from Staci Troilo, click HERE!

Grab a book or two from this talented author, then head on over to the blog tour.

Leave a comment, share, and enter to win my Blog Tour Giveaway!

Staci Troilo’s Blog Tour Stop

Mountain Laurel Christmas On Tour – Day 4! #ShortStory #Christmas #FamilyDrama #Music

Climb in the wagon with me. We’re off to another stop on this short tour!

Today we are taking this magical gypsy wagon across the waters to the UK for a visit with Harmony Kent!

I have known Harmony for many years and have the deepest respect and admiration for her writing talent, diversity, and bravery. She is a fellow Story Empire member and is known for her wonderful support of other authors. If you visit her website, you’ll find this quote and I think it aptly describes her. “As well as being an avid reader and writer, Harmony also offers reviews and supports her fellow indie authors, Harmony works hard to promote and protect high standards within the indie publishing arena.  She is always on the lookout for talent and excellence, and will freely promote any authors or books who she feels have these attributes.”

Her most recent release is a compelling psychological journey that had me on the edge of my seat, biting my fingernails. She depicts a parents’ worst nightmare in a visual and emotive way. I could not stop reading until I knew what happened to this boy, and the ending left me reeling. I highly recommend it!

PURCHASE LINK

To see Harmony’s diverse selection of books, visit HERE!

Grab a book or two from this talented author, then head on over to the blog tour.

Leave a comment, share, and enter to win my Blog Tour Giveaway!

Harmony Kent’s Blog Tour Stop

Mountain Laurel Christmas On Tour – Day 3! #ShortStory #Christmas #FamilyDrama #Music

Climb in the wagon with me. We’re off to another stop on this short tour!

The destination is D.L. Finn‘s beautiful blog site!

D.L. Finn is an eclectic author whose motto is “embrace your inner child.” I’ve enjoyed her work for many years. I would be hard-pressed to pick a favorite from her extensive catalog, so I’m going to tell you about her latest release and share my review.

PURCHASE LINK

MY REVIEW:

I have enjoyed everything I’ve read from this author and this book is no exception. The author has a unique talent for making you stop and think, “What if?” In this book about the tree fairies and the ancient Redwood trees, we find an ordinary family with an extraordinary connection to nature on a camping trip. What happens to the children first, then to the adults is both heartwarming and magical. The family is given a mission to save the beautiful Redwood forest from destruction. The author takes us years ahead and we find the two children, Daniel and Colette grown, married, and with children of their own. The tree fairies visit again and the connection is forged between the human and fairy families. The two short stories following, are in two different fairies’ POV and are delightful as well. This book is classified as a Middle School level, but at almost seventy, I thoroughly enjoyed it, so it is a wonderful read for all ages! If you love magic, nature, and fantasy all combined into a lovely heartwarming story, you will love this book! I highly recommend it.

AMAZON AUTHOR PAGE

So, pick up a book from this talented author, then head on over to the blog tour.

Leave a comment, share, and enter to win my Blog Tour Giveaway!

D.L. Finn’s Blog Tour Stop!

Mountain Laurel Christmas On Tour – Day 2! #ShortStory #Christmas #FamilyDrama #Music

I am thrilled to take Mountain Laurel Christmas on a short blog tour!

The gypsy wagon rolls on to Gwen Plano’s Blog today.

I first met Gwen Plano many years ago when we were both members of a book club. We co-hosted a radio show for a couple of years with another talented author and in that time I got to know her kind and gentle spirit and big heart. Her first book is a memoir that I highly recommend. It is well-written and pulls no punches as she addresses spousal abuse and life afterward.

PURCHASE LINK

You can find her fiction books HERE!

So, pick up a book from this talented author, then head on over to the blog tour.

Leave a comment, share, and enter to win my Blog Tour Giveaway!

Gwen Plano’s Blog Tour Post

Mountain Laurel Christmas On Tour – Day 1! #ShortStory #Christmas #FamilyDrama #Music

I am thrilled to take Mountain Laurel Christmas on a short blog tour!

Our first stop is at C.S. Boyack‘s place!

Boyack is a speculative fiction and fantasy writer extraordinaire! I have read most of his work and highly recommend it for great entertainment.

A series that is diverse and eclectic is Lizzie and The Hat.

Lizzie St. Laurent inherits an old hat from her grandmother’s estate. The hat had belonged to her grandfather. But this is no ordinary hat. Being from another dimension, the Hat has powers! Lizzie and her new partner embark on journeys to hunt and destroy dark entities such as vampires and werewolves. And all while playing music in a band.


Another fabulous series from Boyack takes place on the high seas aboard a ship known as The Lanternfish. I devoured these books and there is a brand new one I haven’t had a chance to crack open yet.

You can find The Lanternfish Series HERE!

So, pick up a book from this talented author, then head on over to the blog tour.

Leave a comment, share, and enter to win my Blog Tour Giveaway!

C.S. Boyack Blog Tour Post

Welcome to Day 8 of The HYPE Blog Tour @YvetteMCalleiro #Hype #NewRelease #BookPromo #YAFiction @YvetteMCalleiro

I am thrilled to welcome my friend and fellow author, Yvette Calleiro, to my blog today. She has a brand new YA book out that deals with some pretty tough social issues. But I’ll let her tell you about it.

GIVEAWAY:  3 e-book copies of HYPE!

Leave a comment below for your chance to win! 

Yvette Calleiro

On Writing a Foreword

I first wrote Hype about ten years ago. It was the second book I had ever written, and it needed major revising (not that I knew it at the time). I tried to get it traditionally published and was not successful, but one publisher did provide me with a few suggestions on ways to improve the story. Hype took a spot on the forgotten shelf for the next decade as I wrote my Diasodz series. Ignored but not forgotten. I knew Cici’s story had to be shared, but I wanted to make sure it was well-received when I gave it to the world.

When I finally decided to revise the story, I felt it was missing an introduction of sorts. When the reader first meets Cici, she has quite an intense personality. She’s quite sure of herself and doesn’t hold anything back. Her voice is strong with a splash of attitude (maybe more than a splash). Some readers may be turned off by such a strong character, and I didn’t want a reader to put the book down before they got to know the real her.

Nowadays, readers want the action to happen on page one, but this story builds up to horrors a bit more slowly. So, a foreword made sense to me. I chose to introduce Cici as a grown adult through an introductory letter. Here it is:

Dear reader,

Time is constantly progressing. It stops for no one. It doesn’t slow for one to further enjoy a moment, nor does it quicken to allow one to forget a difficult time. It treks along on its own constant path, oblivious to our requests.

As with time, our lives are always moving forward. And with time comes experiences that forever shape the people who we are. Every moment, every minute, and every second carries with it a choice that affects which path we will follow. It molds the person we become.

People do not stand before you now without being a collection of their past experiences and the choices they made as a result of those moments. To truly understand someone, you must open yourself up to understand the particles of time that have formed a person’s soul.

It is with these words I find the courage to share with you my story. I am whole today, but there was a time when I was broken. To truly understand, you must understand my story from the girl I once was before my path was forever changed.

Do not ridicule my innocence. Do not mock my naivety. Try not to judge me, like I judged others. Allow my voice to integrate into your mind without prejudice so you can truly hear my story. Then maybe you will understand.

Sincerely,

Cecilia M. Gonzalez

My hope is that this will allow the readers to accept Cici as she is in her teen years, flaws and all. The voice in this letter does not match the voice in chapter one. Cici is living a great life when the story opens. As her life falls apart, her voice will change because tragedy changes all parts of a person, including her voice.

This is my first book with a foreword. My other works do not have one. I’m not sure I’d write one again, but for this story, it doesn’t feel complete without it. I’d love to hear your thoughts on using a foreword to introduce a story. Do you appreciate them or do you tend to skip right over them?

To follow along with the rest of the Hype tour, please visit the author’s blog. Thanks for supporting Yvette M Calleiro and her work!

Yvette Calleiro

Author Bio:

Yvette M. Calleiro is a heavily addicted reader of both young adult and adult novels. She spends most of her time pseudo-living in paranormal worlds with her fictional friends (and boyfriends). When she’s living among real people, Yvette M. Calleiro is a middle school Reading and Language Arts teacher. She’s been sharing her love of literature with her students for over twenty years. Besides writing about the various characters that whisper (and sometimes scream) in her head, she enjoys traveling, watching movies, spending quality time with family and friends, and enjoying the beauty of the ocean.

Yvette lives in Miami, Florida, with her incredible son who has embraced her love for paranormal and adventurous stories. She also shares her space with an assortment of crazy saltwater animals in her 300-gallon tank.

Amazon Links:

Hype – https://www.amazon.com/dp/B09L7BFNXG

The One Discovered (Chronicles of the Diasodz, Book 1) – https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00I4L2Q40

The One Enlightened (Chronicles of the Diasodz, Book 2) – https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00R0QI51I

The One Betrayed (Chronicles of the Diasodz, Book 3) – https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0191O1892

The One Revealed (Chronicles of the Diasodz, Book 4) – https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B01NBKJHIO

The One Awakened (Chronicles of the Diasodz, Book 5) – https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0781WT73J

The One Chosen – A Diasodz Short Story – https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0986Q6P1D

Breathless – A Short Story – https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B08BLVDHQX

Amazon Author Page – https://www.amazon.com/Yvette-M-Calleiro/e/B00I4RJMUU

Social Media Links:

Author Blog: http://yvettemcalleiro.blogspot.com/

Twitter: https://twitter.com/YvetteMCalleiro

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/yvettemcalleiro

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/7800735.Yvette_M_Calleiro

Release Day! Mountain Laurel Christmas! #ShortStory #ChristmasStory #CountryMusic

I am SO super excited that release day is finally here for Mountain Laurel Christmas!

I want to offer a HUGE THANK YOU to everyone who pre-ordered! It should now be on your reading device.

Since I am on a tight budget with Christmas so close at hand, I was fortunate to find the owner of this Gypsy wagon who allowed me to put some advertising on the side of it while we tour.

Created in Canva

So, hang on for a ride. This is going to be a fun tour and I hope you’ll join in on each stop!

There will be a Giveaway!

To enter, follow along on the tour, purchase the book, comment and share everywhere!

The prize: $20 Amazon Gift Card

Now for a little about this story!

A man with three names is deeply embroiled in a struggle within himself. He should be on top of the world. After all, he’s living his dream of making it big in the music business. But instead, he’s drowning and dying inside. A heavy blanket of guilt is his constant companion. He’s failed his family and himself.

Everyone has to find redemption in their own way and that is exactly what Cole Knight (aka Andy Roberts aka Norbert Angus Anderson) must do. So, journey with him on his quest…

Created in Canva

Book Blurb:

Orphaned, his family torn apart by tragedy, Cole Knight has come a long way from a ramshackle miner’s cabin on the side of the Cumberland Mountain.

Daring to follow an impossible dream, he’s made it big in the music business. Now, he’s a country music sensation with a huge house, fancy cars, plenty of willing women, money, and adoring fans. He should be on top of the world. Instead, he’s drowning in a swirling pool of self-contempt and relentless guilt.

It’s easier to lose himself in a bottle than face the hard truth…he hasn’t delivered on a promise he made to his father.

It’s almost Christmas, and the sting of failure drives him back to that tiny cabin in the mountains. But has he waited too late to put the shattered pieces back together—to find himself and restore a lost family? 

PURCHASE LINK

Many Thanks to my fellow Story Empire compadres for helping me launch this new story!

TOUR STOP LINKS WILL BE SHARED DAILY:

11-22-21 C.S. BOYACK

11-23-21 GWEN PLANO

11-29-21 D.L. FINN

11-30-21 HARMONY KENT

12-1-21 STACI TROILO

12-2-21 JOAN HALL

12-6-21 D. WALLACE PEACH

12-7-21 MAE CLAIR

12-8-21 JOHN HOWELL

PLEASE NOTE: MY REGULAR BLOG POSTS WILL BE SUSPENDED WHILE I AM ON TOUR, BUT WILL RESUME FOLLOWING THE BLOG TOUR!

#WednesdayWonders – #Gemstones – #Malachite

Welcome to another stroll through the amazing world of gemstones!

Photo by Jan Sikes

I only have a very small piece of the gemstone I am going to share with you today, but my sister, Linda Broday, sent me photos of her beautiful Malachite heart to show more of this stone’s beauty. Thank you, sister!

The first photo is my little piece and it is approximately 3/4″.

Photo by Jan Sikes 11-16-21

The next photo is my sister’s Malachite heart.

Malachite is an important protection stone. It absorbs negative energies and pollutants, picking them up from the atmosphere and from the body.

It can help guard against radiation and clear electromagnetic pollution (like the Sodalite we looked at last week).  It is recommended that anyone who lives near a nuclear power plant, have this stone in their home.

Malachite clears and activates the chakras, especially the heart chakra and third eye. It is a powerful tool to assist with spiritual guidance. It opens the heart to unconditional love, encourages risk-taking and change, breaks unwanted ties and outworn patterns, and teaches how to take responsibility for one’s actions, thoughts, and feelings.  Malachite releases inhibitions and develops empathy with others. It alleviates mental disturbances and combats dyslexia. 

It can aid in enabling you to absorb and process information. It can also stimulate dreams.

Physically, Malachite is an extremely versatile healing stone. It is particularly useful for menstrual cramps and has been called the midwife stone as it aids in childbirth. It resonates with the female sexual organs. This stone can help lower blood pressure, treat asthma, epilepsy, swollen joints, travel sickness, vertigo and the parathyroid. It aligns DNA and cellular structure to enhance the immune system.

It is recommended that you wear Malachite on your left hand, if a ring and left wrist, if a bracelet. You may place it on your solar plexus to absorb deep negative emotions.

Use ONLY polished Malachite. If used as an elixir, place the stone near, but not in the water.

I’d love to hear from you. Do you have a piece of Malachite? If so, how do you use it?