Even Turkeys get a Workout

One thing I’ve learned in this fiction writing journey is that the simplest things are often the most difficult.  Why?  Because a lot of work went into making that item look simple.  When I started writing, I thought one sat at a computer and just told the story.  Then I learned about pacing and how to keep the story moving forward.  I learned about where to place the power words to allow the sentence to make the most impact.  i learned dialogue could be more than dialogue – it could be banter with insight to character and subtext.  The simplest
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Holidays and Reading – Quick Five!

It’s a busy time of year. For the US Banditas and BBs, you have Thanksgiving next week. For the rest of us, who don’t celebrate Thanksgiving, we edge ever closer to the big Christmas holiday! I don’t about where you are, but the Christmas ads started appearing in late September and Christmas in the shops was around that time too! Now, I love Christmas, but really? It gets earlier and earlier every year and the sales even start before Christmas now! I went into one well-known shop and they were already playing Christmas music in September! I said to the
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A Double Shot Gingerbread Latte Caramel Mocha Vodka Americano to Go…

TIS THE SEASON!!!   Ahhhhh!  The smell of gingerbread has begun.  Oh, and spice cookies.  And cinnamon.  And pumpkin…oh, my yes, the pumpkin. There’s the delicious attack of the Gingerbread Men.  We’ll be doing that right after the Thanksgiving.   We’ll be planning a night with friends and neighbors to make gingerbread houses.  OMGosh, you’ve seen some of these marvelous creations, right?  Ours are NOTHING like that.  Hahahah!  Ours are usually a mish-mosh of gingerbread, icing, gumdrops, and candy.  They look like mutant mini Abominable Snowman Lairs. But we have so darn much fun!  Ha! Then there’s the eggnog.  My
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Baby Needs New Shoes!–Just Shoot Me Now

I recently posted this on my facebook page: Dear shoe manufacturers: Not all snow is dry, and not all rain is warm. There is this thing called WINTER, which in many places is COLD and WET at the same time, which means all those cute, suede, pompom-bedecked fluffy things will turn into mush in approximately two hours. Thank you so much for your attention to this matter. Cassondra, the frustrated shoe shopper Hey, I would totally wear those boots on the left. I think pompoms are cute on boots! Okay…This whole thing started about two weeks ago when I was
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Oireachtas!

That’s pronounced “oh-ROCK-tus” for those of you who don’t speak Gaelic.  This includes myself, of course.   The only way I’ve learned to spell it properly is to remind myself that the word “reach” is sitting there in the middle.  The rest I guess at. So what IS this bizarre word & why do I bring it up? Oireachtas is a regional Irish dance competition, a qualifying event for the World Championships.  It’s being held here in Minneapolis over Thanksgiving weekend & my girls are participating.  As a result, Oireachtas has taken over my life.  It’s taken over the whole
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Tiny Treats for the Holidays

A little more than a month ago, I got a wild hair to do a collection of micro stories as a free giveaway to readers for the holidays. So I quickly tossed the idea out to several friends to see if they’d be interested, and a good many of them, including several Banditas, were. Yay! The idea was that each person would contribute a really short holiday story of between 500 and 1,200 words. Sounds easy, right? Well, sometimes writing short is harder than writing a longer book. But it was a fun challenge, and the result is Tiny Treats:
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It’s Not Too Early For a Christmas SuperRomance from Rachel Brimble!

From our discussions in the past, I know that many of us in the Lair LOVE holiday stories! So today, I have a real treat for you as I welcome back my lovely friend, fellow Brit and SuperRomance sister, Rachael Brimble, to tell us about her latest release – Christmas at the Cove. Thanks, Anna. It’s great to be back here! I am so excited that my Christmas Superromance has been released to the big, wide world! Christmas At The Cove is the fourth book in my series set in the fictional UK seaside town of Templeton Cove. When I
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Cruising State Of Mind

As I write this, I am sitting in a hotel room in Port Canaveral, Florida, just a hop and a skip down from the enormous cruise ship terminal housed here. In celebration of our wedding anniversary, which Trish posted about so brilliantly yesterday, my husband and I decided to go on a cruise. Our second cruise and the first one all by ourselves. Once upon a time, we did not believe we were “cruise people.” I know “cruise people” and I was sure I did not share their interests. Plus, I get seasick. Really seasick. And not just seasick, but all kinds
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Anniversary Times Two

What are the odds that two of the Banditas would share an anniversary? Not outside the realm of possibility but it would be notable. But what if two of us shared an anniversary not only on the day but the same year? Even slimmer. Well, odds aside, Caren and I both got married to our husbands on the same exact day. We both celebrated our 22nd wedding anniversaries yesterday. So we thought it would be fun to share our journeys to and since that day. Where and when did you meet your husband? Caren: Ron and I met fall semester,
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5 Tips for Happy Holiday Reading

Ahh, yes.  Tis the season.  We are definitely sliding into holiday time, aren’t we?  Halloween, with it’s spooky vibe and low-commitment fun are a fond memory (although the weight gained from eating all of that candy is definitely sticking with me).  In the U.S. Thanksgiving is starting to tap on our shoulders with a reminder to make those grocery lists, send out invites, or if nothing else start practicing our family-dinner-smile.  Yes, the smile that for many of us requires gritted teeth or bitten tongues.  And then ::boom:: the Christmas Season is upon us. So I thought it’d be handy
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