April 30, 2012

Summer Vacation via Movies

by Juliette Springs

The temperature is rising and as we spend more time outdoors, it's a perfect time for traveling. Since I just blew my budget going to Vegas and Los Angeles, I have to travel the cheapest way possible—the movies! Movies are the cheapest way to travel. That's right, I said movies. Think about it, you meet different people, see different places, all from the comforts of home or a movie theater. Amazing, isn't it? Whenever my finances allow I'll continue my “in-person” travels to Europe, Egypt, South America... but until then I'm content to travel via movies. This is the time of year that my movie traveling is even more fun.  In a few days one of my favorite times of year will start. Summer Blockbuster Movie Season. On May 4th, The Avengers will be released. In honor of this glorious travel event I decided to share my favorite movie "vacations." 

My top picks are listed below:

1.               1.   Soul Food—Powerful movie about family and forgiveness
2. Interview with The VampireOne of the best vampire movies EVER (Tom Cruise at his best).
3. The Color Purple—The relationship between sisters (I still cry when I watch this movie)
4.  Any Harry Potter Movie—An abused teenager who discovers he inherited magic and later destroys an evil wizard.
5. The Blade Series—Wesley Snipe sas an ass kicking vampire hunter (who's also a vampire)
6. She's All That—A classic 90's teenage flick- about love, peer pressure and acceptance
7. Clueless—Only one of the best teen flicks ever
8. Forrest Gump—A classic, Tom Hanks at his best
9. Underworld series—Another kick ass vampire/werewolf movie
10. Constantine—Supernatural elements, a hint of romance, a lot of action (plus I love Keanu Reeves)
11. The Matrix series—No explanation needed (and more Keanu Reeves)

Other favorites:

1. Clash of the Titans (2010 version)
2. Twilight Saga- New Moon (my favorite out of this series)

In need of a "vacation" check out some of these flicks from your dvd rental company of choice or from your local library.  Feeling adventurous-venture out to the nearest movie theater and travel to exotic locales.

What are some of your favorite movies?

Coming May 16, 2012
 Sarim's Scent

Be careful what you look for...

All her life Victoria wanted to meet her missing, father….certain he had the answers she was seeking. Fueled with thoughts of anger and revenge it wasn't until her mother's death she embarked on the journey to find him. Her journey leads her into the arms of her childhood friend, Ivan-the only man she lets close to her heart. He understands her and has always been her confidant. But would he continue to be if she revealed all of her secrets and the real reason she's searching for her father. 

Ivan was weary of living a lie. Unable to walk away from family obligations, he's been forced to deceive the only woman he's cared about ….who, he realizes, is his mate. Ivan knows he's doing the unforgivable and it’s just a matter of time before she finds out the truth.  He can't resist the chemistry between them nor deny the sensuous passion he experiences with Victoria.

A heated encounter seals the fate of Victoria and Ivan. After discovering the true depth of Ivan’s deception, Victoria must decide if she can truly trust Ivan and trust that the mate’s bond they share is enough to protect their relationship... from her father’s wrath and Ivan’s ex-lover.
Purchase your copy May 16, 2012  at http://www.soulmatepublishing.com/

Juliette Springs
The darker side of romance
Follow me on Twitter @JulietteSprings

April 28, 2012

Coming Soon - Brenda Novak's Auction for Diabetes Research

Coming May 1st - Brenda Novak's 8th Annual Online Auction for Diabetes Research. If you have not checked out this fantastic fund raiser, you should!  There are over 2,000 items offered up for bidding, from gift baskets, to books (audio, paper and electronic), to eReaders (with books on them), to conference registrations, to once-in-a-lifetime trips to much, much more!

There is bound to be SOMETHING for EVERYONE!  

I have participated both as a bidder and as a donor.  This year, I already have my sights set on a dozen items.  And I have outdone myself by donating not 1, not 2, but 3 of my own baskets and participating with other authors in several more baskets.

There is bound to be SOMETHING for EVERYONE!

My baskets include a pamper yourself with a spa, cook lover's basket and Pride and Prejudice Movie Night (the Colin Firth addition).  I am participating in a Sweethearts of the West basket (cowboy lovers be alert!), a Kid's History basket (really fun to put together),  Seduced by History basket (historical romances galore) and a Kindle Touch basket (chockful of historical e-romances).

Check out the auction's home page HERE.

Did I mention that there is bound to be SOMETHING for EVERYONE.

Do you have a donation for Brenda Novak's Auction?  Tell us about it!

April 26, 2012

Thousands to Lose Internet in July--Are One Who Will?

An article was in the Sunday Houston Chronicle that says, in part, "Unknown to most of them [computer users], their problem began when international hackers ran an online advertising scam to take control of infected computers around the world." The result will be that come July, when the FBI closes down the safety net they set up a few months ago, those with infected computers will no longer be able to access the internet.  You are encouraged to visit www.dcwg.org and check to see if your computer has the virus.

I just checked my laptap, and it was very easy to do. It said that I was not infected. But it also said that the malware could have told them to tell me I wasn't infected....lol.

Here's the full Chronicle article.  Also, here's an article at PC Mag Online about it.

Anna Kathryn Lanier

April 25, 2012

Wednesday's Chow - Baked Redfish

Oops. I almost missed my weekly recipe blog.  This is really good, easy recipe.  I love the taste of this fish, though I may actually red snapper instead, as that's easier for me to get.

Baked Redfish, also known as red drum.
·         1 1/2 to 2 pounds fresh or frozen redfish fillets, thawed
·         1 teaspoon salt
·         dash pepper
·         1 ground dill
·         2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice, about 1 small lemon
·         1/4 cup melted butter

Place fish in a lightly buttered shallow baking dish, skin side down. Salt fish. In a cup, combine remaining ingredients. Pour over redfish fillets and bake at 350° for 20 to 25 minutes. The baked redfish should flake easily with a fork when done.
Baked redfish serves 4 to 6. 

April 24, 2012

The 2012 Romance through the Ages Published Author Competition


The 2012 Romance through the Ages Published Author Contest

The 2012 Romance through the Ages Published Author Contest, sponsored by RWA chapter #189, Hearts through History Romance Writers, was conceived to award excellence in published, especially historical, romance fiction. The contest is judged by avid readers of romance. The winners of each category are awarded a trophy engraved with the author's name and the book's title. Winners will also be included in a full-page RWR advertisement.

Eligibility: Entries must be received by May 15, 2012. Novels and novellas must have a copyright of first printing date of 2011, no matter the format. Entries may be entered in electronic format (PDF, Kindle, or epub).

Entry fee:
____$20 for Hearts through History Romance Writers members (RWA members may join HHRW by enclosing $45. This includes $25 for annual dues, plus a reduced member entry fee of $20.)
____ $15 for each additional entry for Hearts through History Romance Writers
____ $25 for other RWA members
____ $20 for each additional entry for other RWA members
____ $30 for non-RWA members
____ $25 for each additional entry from non-RWA members

Author must provide four copies of the entered book, which will not be returned.
Winners will be announced during Hearts through History’s Annual General Meeting during RWA’s National Conference in July 2012. If a category does not receive at least 5 entries, the category will be canceled, and the author will have the option to choose another category, if the author chooses to withdraw the books and entry fees will be returned.

Categories for entry:Due to Hearts through History being entirely about history, the historical romances have several defined categories.

Historical Categories:
Colonial/Civil War/Western
Post Victorian/WWII/up to 1960
Time Travel/Historical Paranormal
Historical YA
Historical Novella (less than 40,000 Words)
Best First Historical Book

All other categories:
Romantic Suspense 
Paranormal/Fantasy/ Futuristic/Time Travel 
Young Adult
Novella (less than 40,000 Words)
Best First Book

Judging: All entries are judged by avid readers of romance. There are four judges. The lowest score will be dropped to determine the final score. Ties are broken using the dropped low score. After the dropped low score is used, if there is still a tie for first place, authors will be asked to send two additional print copies of the book to break the tie. Failure of the author to supply these copies in a timely manner will result in forfeiture of the win.

Books are given to the judges as a "thank you" for judging. If sending a print book, it is suggested that the author send a signed copy. They are not returned. Scores and finalist placement are not revealed. Score sheets are not returned. The decision of the judges is final.

PLEASE NOTE: We would prefer this entry form sent electronically, when possible, although an address is provided below for any entry forms sent via USPS. The address for books will be sent later in an "Entry Confirmation" email. 
Make checks payable to HHRW or Hearts through History Romance Writers, or send entry fee by PayPal. When sending by PayPal, send funds to 
treasurer@heartsthroughhistory.comPlease type the category of your entry in the comment section of PayPal.
Winners will be announced at Hearts through History Romance Writers annual general meeting held during Romance Writers of America’s National conference. July 26th, 2012.

Send electronic entry forms (preferred method) and electronic books to:Denise Pattison denise.pattison@gmail.com 


Send paper entry forms, print books, and checks to:
Denise Pattison
PO Box 3151
Quinlan, TX 75474

If using anything other than the USPS
8080 PR 2544
Quinlan, TX 75474
The post office does not deliver to the physical address.

Denise Pattison
RTTA Published Contest Coordinator

April 23, 2012

An Interview With Goldie from Gnome On The Range

Thank you for having me as a guest on your blog today. I have written an interview with one of my characters from my book Gnome On The Range. Goldie is the wonderful, interfering, meddling mother-in-law who runs the town's only adult store. Enjoy!
Interview with Goldie, owner of Goldilocks Adult Store- Bozeman, MT
When did you open your store and why an adult store?
I opened the store back in the mid-seventies. I'm what you would have called a daring woman. People probably call me a lot of other things today, but that hasn't stopped me yet! Back then, no one talked about sex let alone shopped in a store to buy something to help improve it. Winter in Montana makes for many a cozy night. What better way to spend it than in front of the fire with the one you love?

Speaking of love, do you consider yourself a matchmaker?
If the shoe fits! I wouldn't exactly call myself a nosy sort, but I don't like to see young people all alone. If two people can find love between the sheets, I'm all for helping out.

In what ways do you help, specifically?
I've been known to give someone a little nudge. Others, I provide a little box from Goldilocks to help them get things moving along.

So you think having sex is a way to fall in love? What about dinner and a movie?
Hell. Dinner and a movie are just fine. It's what comes after where I come in. Sex is good anytime. Morning, bedtime, whatever. As long as there are two, or more (!), consenting adults who are staying out of trouble and away from too much TV, so much the better.

Too much TV?
Rots the brain.

Okay. Describe your latest success story on the relationship/marriage front.
All right. I'll replace the names to protect the innocent, but if you're reading this and from Bozeman, it might not be too hard to figure it out. Jessica hadn't been in a relationship in a loooonnng time. She'd found someone who'd relit her pilot light, if you know what I mean. But she was too chicken to make a move. So I sent a little care package to the man, Thomas.

Your care package made them fall in love?
Hell no! It made her so angry with me she took things into her own hands. She wasn't overly quick about it so I threatened another care package. Two days later, bam. The deed was done.

So you really are a matchmaker. In a weird sort of way. Who's your next love victim? Do you have someone in mind?
I sure do! For those of you who are familiar with Jane and Ty's love story, you might remember Veronica who also works with me here at Goldilocks. It might be dead winter and freezing cold outside, but a man just came to town that will keep Veronica warm at night! Ha!

And what are you going to do?
Help them fall in love. By the way, are you in a relationship?

Oh, um. No.
I knew it. Make sure you give me your address and I'll send you a little package from Goldilocks. I'm guessing you're into [author of story removed this section of the interview for personal reasons]. Don't worry, we have that kind of thing in the store.

And that's all for today. Thanks to Goldie of Goldilocks for today's enlightening blog experience.

If you enjoyed this little impromptu interview with Goldie, please read Gnome On The Range to learn how she meddles in the love life of Jane West (aka Jessica in the interview above). Here is the book blurb:

Once you get the zing you can’t go back.

Jane West has everything a woman could want. A job in a small Montana town’s only adult store, two busy young boys and one dead husband. Everything except a little excitement--a little zing. But that changes one summer morning at a garage sale when her kids buy some garden gnomes.

Now someone wants those gnomes and will let nothing get in their way. Including Jane. This new excitement for Jane spells trouble for a relationship with new neighbor--and hot fireman--Ty Strickland. Can Jane and Ty handle a relationship meddling mother-in-law, crazy kids, and stay alive while trying to solve the mystery of the garden gnomes?
Gnome On The Range is for sale on Amazon.

Coming soon! The sequel - Gnomeless

April 19, 2012

Wednesdays Chow - Friqusee (Frick-a-cee)

Note: Blogspot didn't do what it was supposed to do...this WAS scheduled to post yesterday, the 18th, but it didn't and I have no idea why....so a day late, but still worth having here's a recipe from Passion's Flight Author Shannan Albright -

My roots are from the bayou of Louisiana and this recipe has been in my family for hundreds of years. I am happy to share it with you today.


1 lb. Hamburger Meat - (Make sure it's 70%. the leaner the meat, the weaker Roux you will have.)
1 Bell Pepper
1 Medium white or yellow onion
3 16 oz Cans of Tomato Sauce

In a skillet brown hamburger meat.
Remove cooked meat leaving the drippings in pan.
Use approx. 2 tablespoons of flour or enough to make a paste. Cook on med high until dark brown.
Add chopped onion and bell pepper. This will stop the Roux from cooking.
Add tomato sauce and equal parts water and stir. Place meat into pot and let simmer for 45 min.
Add Tabasco to taste.
Serve over rice.

April 16, 2012

In Loving Memory of my Mom

Me, Mom, my sister Jo

I am still trying to process what happened this weekend.  On Thursday, I drove to Burelson, Tx where my sister lives, for a few days visit. On Saturday, April 14, I spoke at the Yellow Rose RWA chapter on 'The Hero's Journey via TITANIC.'  There were several members I have known for years online, and it was wonderful to finally meet Ashley Kath-Bilsky and Caroline Clemmons. 

On Friday, however, my mother was hospitalized with pneumonia. This was the third time in a year she was in the hospital for pneumonia. I knew she was sick, and was glad she finally went to the hospital.  I decided to cut my trip short and go home on Sunday instead of Monday.  Before I could do so, my brother called me at 4:30 Sunday morning to tell my that my mother had passed away. My sister drove back to Houston with me on Sunday.  Jo and I went to the funeral home today to make the arrangements. We went to her house (which she shares with my brother) to get her clothes and pick up a few personal items.  We spent the evening going through photographs to pick 50 for the video the funeral home will make of mom's life.  What fun that was, I mean, really, it was...looking back at pictures, the fun, the holidays, the goofy ones you don't want anyone to see, the ones you forgot about, the memories they evoked.

I'm tired, but can't sleep.  I am still numb. My mother was a strong, stubborn woman. She was not perfect. If she got pissed at you, she usually stayed pissed for a long, long time (just ask my sister ).  But she lived through more than her share of hard times, physical, emotional and spiritual. She was a rock, too. In the past year, she has been through a lot physically and I think she was just sick and tired of being sick and tired. She did not have the strength to do the things she wanted to do: garden, cook, shop, go places and be active.

I will get through this week (funeral is set for Saturday), I will get through next week, and the week after that....but life will not be the same, because my mom isn't here for me to talk to, to laugh with or to have lunch with (as we did nearly every Thursday).

I love you, mom.  Rest in peace, plant God's garden, and run in the surf!

Passion's Flight - Hero Tegan Murin A Hero with Attitude

Thank you Anna for having me on your blog today. I am thrilled to be here and share my hero Tegan with all of your readers.

When I started writing Tegans book I thought, this should be easy. I love cat's right? Tegan kept hollering at me to have his book next so why not. I should have it pounded out in a few months and then off to another Enforcer and another story. Well, let me just say, that the reality was very different from the way I thought it would go.

I've been asked several times now, what Hero is my favorite. Well, my favorite is also the one I found I liked the least. Troublesome, short tempered and downright rude.  I found very little to work with when I started his story. It wasn't until I got half way through his book that I got it. It was a thump on the forehead with the flat of my palm, could have had a V-8 epiphany. All of his rude, brash and downright nastiness was actually hiding a very vulnerable person.

So we sat down and started from scratch and I found a totally new perspective on his world. Yes, he was still rude, contrary and brutally honest, that was simply his make-up. It is not so much the words he uses when he offers his advice, but the tone and manner when he delivers them that must be viewed.
Tegan is a walking, talking contradiction. He's a fighter, a soldier who won't think twice when comes down to taking a life. He's a Doctor who fights just as hard to save a one.

A loner who keeps his emotional grid locked down tight, and yet, always there for his fellow Enforcers when they are in need of a friend.

Hot tempered, he can fly into a rage with just one wrong word, then offer the most illuminating advice to help you through a tough spot.

So yeah, it took me a while to wrap my brain around this tough were-panther who had so many inconsistencies. After seven long months , pounding out his story, I finally can say this is the most complex, frustrating male I ever encountered and with all his flaws he was so worthy of a happy ending. This is the one guy you want in your corner whatever the situation you find yourself in. Straight up, Tegan puts the H in Hero.

It could be because he is flawed, wounded and misunderstood. A tortured soul who endures his lot in life as best he can and makes plenty of mistakes along the way. But then, haven't we all been there in our lives a time or two? I know when things get to me I can always think about Tegan and hear him tell me in his deep growling voice, 'Pull up your girlie pants and get on with it.'

And the funny thing is, it helps and gets me laughing. Sometimes it just takes one of your creations kicking you mentally in the pants to put everything in proper perspective. So after seven months of hell, at least three rewrites and becoming half bald, pulling my hair out with this cantankerous hunky were-panther. I can now honestly say: thanks for the journey. I'll just take that V-8 now and let the rest come to me as it will.

If your interested in knowing a bit more about my crazy life you can find me at:

April 14, 2012

Northwest Houston RWA announces The 20th Annual Lone Star Writing Competition.


Northwest Houston RWA announces The 20th Annual Lone Star Writing Competition.
The contest is now open for entries.  The Lone Star Writing Competition is one of the few contests with two published authors and one unpublished author judging the first round.  Finalists will be sent to BOTH an agent and an editor for judging. In addition they will be sent to an epublishing editor.
NEW !!! Special Prize !!!      All entrants will be entered into a drawing for a 50 page edit by one of NWHRWA’s published authors. There will be 7 winners, one for each category.
EARLY BIRD ENTRY FEE:  $5 discount on all entries submitted by midnight May 26, 2012; $15 for NWH members/$20 non-NHW members. 
Entry fee: After May 26, 2012 - $20 NWH members; $25 non-NWH members.
All electronic this year. Entries must arrive via email by midnight June 9, 2012. Any entries received after the deadline will be deleted unopened.
Winners will receive a custom made sterling silver pin and a website banner !!!! 
For more information including rules, the score sheet, and entry form, see our new, updated website at  www.nwhrwa.com.
Eligibility: Unpublished may enter any category.  Published may enter any category in which they're not published, or in which they've not been contracted for five years. Open to RWA and non-RWA members.
Ann James
Northwest Houston 2nd VP
Lone Star Contest Coordinator

April 11, 2012

Wednesday's Chow - Cookie Sheet Apple Tart

This week's guest, Melissa Aires, Refugees in Urloon - Meet My Hero, shares a yummy looking dessert recipe.  Enjoy.

Cookie Sheet Apple Tart

Pie dough for two pie shells

Roll Pie dough to fit cookie sheet.


6 Granny Smith apples, peeled and sliced
1C sugar
1Tsp cinnamon
½ Tsp nutmeg
½ C Apricot or Apple jelly for glaze

Arranged apple slices in rows, overlapping a little. Mix spices and sugar into jelly and warm to make glaze. Spread glaze over apple slices with pastry brush, reserving half.

Bake at 375 for 45 minutes or until crust and apples are lightly browned. Before serving, warm remaining glaze and brush over tart.

April 8, 2012

Refugees on Urloon--Meet My Hero!

 by Melisse Aires

Thanks for hosting me, Anna!

My new release is a scifi romance set on an exotic waterworld planet.

Captain Liam Ringel: Mid forties, tall, thin but strong, overgrown iron gray streaked black hair. Some ancient Terran Asian ancestry.

Captain Liam Ringel has been in the Confederated Worlds military since his teens. His affluent family sent him to the best military academy at the start of the Asha Rebellion. The war against the Asha rebels has lasted since his teens. Now he is the much decorated instructor at the elite Military Academy, teaching young men and women from wealthy and powerful families throughout the Confederation. Their training vessel gets to observe the Asha Armada as a new and powerful weapon is deployed. The backlash of the weapon hurls the small training ship through a wormhole, into deep space. 

Two weary refugees, two moons and a life-changing fertility festival. 
Watch out for a whole lot of sensuality.

Under normal circumstances, Svana, non-military maintenance crew, and Captain Liam Ringel, a highly respected military instructor, would never have crossed paths. A sudden anomaly, however, thrusts them into deep space where they are rescued by the inhabitants of an exotic and isolated waterworld, Urloon. 

With no rescue forthcoming, the refugees can choose between adapting to the sea or farming the land. Svana is saddened when her budding friendship with Liam changes due to their different choices. However, when they are invited to an alien fertility festival, the Moonfest, they are given the opportunity to create a memory that will impact and intertwine both their futures. 

WARNING: Alien fertility festival, aurora lights, dancing alien beasts, body paints and hot pheromones. M/F Sensual.

You can read Liam's story in Refugees On Urloon,

More information can be found on my  

Melisse Aires

April 7, 2012

Help the Homeless with Author Teri Thackston

Author Teri Thackston has asked me to pass on this infromation. To help celebrate her birthday, she's donating 55 cents for each copy of her newest release Onslaught to the Star of Hope mission.  Star of Hope is a homeless shelter/food kitchen in Houston, TX, who, obviously, help the downtrodden.  

Here's what Teri had to say:

I want to raise more money for the Star of Hope, so I'm extending my double-nickels promo for the entire month of April. Please SHARE with your friends who might be interested in helping this great homeless shelter—and reading a suspense novel that features terrifying storms, kidnapped children and, of course, a bit of romance. For every copy of Onslaught that sells during April 2012, I'll donate fifty-five cents to the Star of Hope Mission.

The Star of Hope Mission is a Christ-centered organization that provides food, shelter and counseling to homeless men, women and children. It is truly one of America's stars so I hope you will help me to support them. Simply order a copy of Onslaught from Amazon, Barnes and Noble or Smashwords during April to help an amazing organization do its work. I would appreciate you sharing this announcement with all your friends. Thanks!

Sorrow’s Point, Texas is under attack. Robberies, drug trafficking, a suspicious fire…for local cop Joshua Dawson, the only thing missing in this assault on his coastal hometown is a hurricane. But it is September—the month for vicious storms—so he’s not betting against one.

Ronnie Clarke never broke a law in her life…until the day she kidnapped two month-old Danny. But it was the only way to save the baby from the nut-case cult that wants to sell him to the head of a Mexican drug cartel. So she hides with him in quiet little Sorrow's Point.

But Sorrow's Point isn't as quiet as she hoped. The bad guys are closing in. Joshua Dawson is asking too many questions about her and Danny…personal questions that she would love to answer. But he’s a cop and she’s a kidnapper. So, to protect Danny from the evil pursuing him, she must withhold the truth from this man who insists on always doing the right thing. Joshua, however, is determined to uncover her secrets. 

And that September storm, like the attraction brewing between them, is building on the horizon.

Here are the direct links:

Amazon: http://tinyurl.com/7duylmk 
Barnes & Noble: http://tinyurl.com/756mopp 
Smashwords (for PDF or other formats): http://www.smashwords.com/books/view/140723
Star of Hope Mission (http://www.sohmission.org )


April 6, 2012

MUST SEE: Breast Cancer Video

You have to check out this breast cancer awareness video...well, actually it's about the importance of doing self-breast exams. But well worth watching...trust me.

And be sure to watch it to the end....the information you're given is well worth it....

Anna Kathryn

April 4, 2012

Wednesday's Chow-Fresh Three-Berry Mini Pies

This week's guest,  MK McClintock shares with us an original recipe for Three-Berry Mini Pies.  Visit MK's blog post, Holding Out For a Hero.

What does one do when one has a surplus of delicious fresh berries on hand? The possibilities are almost endless, though in this case, I was in the mood for pie and not a large whole pie but rather a mini pocket pie if you will. I love the natural flavor of berries and that really stands out in this recipe. The crust, when done properly, is wonderfully flaky without being too thick, almost pastry like. This is a versatile recipe and the fruits or berries used can vary-just be sure that if you do substitute other fruits or berries that you end up with 4 cups.  

Fresh Three-Berry Mini Pies

Recipe By: MK McClintock
Yield: 8 mini pies
Servings: 16

--------  ------------  --------------------------------
For the Crusts:
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 tsp sea salt
  • 2/3 + 2 Tbs unsalted butter
  • Water as needed    
For the Filling: 
  • 1 Tbs organic granulated sugar
  • 1 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 4 Tbs all-purpose flour
  • 2 cups fresh blueberries
  • 1 cup fresh raspberries
  • 1 cup fresh blackberries
  • 1 Tbs organic granulated sugar
  • 1 Tbs all-purpose flour
For the crust before baking:
  • 1 large egg white, whipped
  • 1 Tbs juice from berry filling mixture
  1. Preheat the oven(s) to 375 F. 
  2. To make the crust, simply combine the butter, salt and flour. Mix with pastry cutter or fingers until crumbly. Slowly add water until you have a 'spongy' dough. 
  3. Pour the dough onto a well-floured mixture and 'knead' a bit of the flour into the dough until you have a soft and smooth dough. 
  4. Roll out and cut 16-5" rounds. You will have to roll the dough out more than once. 
To make the pies:
  1. Prepare the pie filling by combining flour, salt and cinnamon until well blended. Fold the berries gently into the flour mixture until coated. 
  2. Combine 1 Tbs flour with 1 Tbs sugar-set aside for easy access.
  3. Prepare two baking sheets with unbleached parchment paper.  
  4. Lay out one 5" round, sprinkle a little of the flour/sugar mixture onto the round. 
  5. Scoop a slightly overflowing 1/2 cup of berry mixture onto the center of each round. 
  6. Lay a second 5" round on top of the berry mixture and squeeze the edges together, fold upward, and pinch edges with fork.
  7. Combine the egg white, 1 Tbs juice until well blended
  8. Brush each pie with the egg white mixture.
  9. Bake for 35-45 minutes (check after 30 minutes-do not over bake). 
  10. Cool on baking sheets for 5 minutes then transfer pies (still on parchment) to cooling racks. Serve hot or cool. Pies reheat very well. 
  11. If you'd like a sweeter taste, sprinkle 2 Tbs sugar over brushed pies before baking. This will add an additional approx 12 calories per serving. 
                                    - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

Nutritional Analysis Per Serving (1/2 mini pie): 166 Calories; 9g Fat (50.3% calories from fat); 2g Protein; 19g Carbohydrate; 2g Dietary Fiber; 25mg Cholesterol; 120mg Sodium.  Exchanges: 1 Grain(Starch); 1/2 Fruit; 2 Fat; 0 Other Carbohydrates.

Allergy Warning
: This recipe contains eggs. (in posted version).

Copyright: Originally posted on Rising Wolf Eats 29 Aug 2010 and reposted by original author, Rising Wolf Eats and MK McClintock. Image ©Rising Wolf Eats – All Rights Reserved. http://risingwolfeats.blogspot.com/2010_08_01_archive.html

April 2, 2012

Holding Out for a Hero...or is it a Cowboy?

Holding Out for a Hero...or is it a Cowboy?
By MK McClintock

If you’re anything like me, what immediately would pop into your mind is a popular little movie called Footloose (Kevin Bacon-style), and yes I realize that this movie has absolutely nothing to do with cowboys…or could it? Are we certain Bonnie Tyler wasn’t channeling an old western movie when she wrote Holding Out for a Hero?

Isn’t there a white knight upon a fiery steed?
Late at night I toss and turn and dream of what I need

I Need A Hero...

Okay, so perhaps this just describes my personal cowboy fantasy. A tall, daring, swoon-worthy cowboy dressed in black with wavy hair, a smile to kill and eyes so deep a woman could drown in their depths. Can you picture him, sitting there atop his tall steed, gun ready and willing to battle any outlaw foolish enough to cross him…or you.

Somewhere after midnight
In my wildest fantasy
Somewhere just beyond my reach
There’s someone reaching back for me

Ooh, just those few words conjure naughty images and since we’re dreaming, who doesn’t want their cowboy to be just a little naughty. Of course we want this daring and dashing cowboy to sweep into our dreams and bring those fantasies to life, but we also want him to be gallant and chivalrous, daring to fight the good fight, rescue us when we need it and stand by us when we’re strong enough to go at it alone.

We all want our hero and when it comes to cowboys, especially those in books, we can handle some flaws and we can handle some disappointments, but in the end we want our cowboys strong, willing and able.

Up Where the mountains meet the heavens above
Out where the lightning splits the sea
I would swear that there’s someone somewhere
Watching me
Through the wind and the chill and the rain
And the storm and the flood
I can feel his approach
Like a fire in my blood

When I write a cowboy, I want a man who stirs me, infuriates me and excites me. He doesn’t have to be the perfect man, but he certainly has to be the perfect cowboy. Perhaps Bonnie Tyler hadn’t intended for someone to dissect her song and compare it to cowboy heroes, but in my book those are the best kind. 

When writing the cowboys of my Montana Gallagher series, I opted for the swoon-worth, the charming, and the daring to fight to save type, but they don't always do it right the first time. They'll fight to the death to save someone they love and they'll charm their way into the hearts of women (okay, perhaps not all women). When I read a cowboy or write a cowboy, I want a hero - plain and simple. 

What do you want in a hero? Someone who can rescue the damsel, ignite your inner fire or save the day...or perhaps all of the above?

Brenna Cameron travels from Scotland after losing someone she loves in search of family she didn't know existed. Alone now in the world, Brenna makes an arduous journey, following the trail of discovery to Briarwood, Montana. Here she meets Ethan Gallagher, and the rest of the Gallagher clan. Only with their help is she able to discover lost family, heal old wounds and embark on a treacherous confrontation with a man who destroyed her family. 

As head of the Gallagher clan, Ethan has more than enough to occupy his thoughts and time-he didn't need the complication of Brenna Cameron and he certainly didn't need the trouble that came with her. Ethan takes on the unwanted duty of self-appointed protector to the headstrong Scot, only to discover there is such a thing as second chances and more to life than revenge.

Giveaway: Drawing for free Kindle copy of Gallagher's Pride. Winner will be chosen on April 6th!

McClintock was born on the west coast, but after less than eight years she left with her family to the Rocky Mountains. After more adventures around the country, business college and culinary school, McClintock found a place to call home in Montana.

Over the years McClintock traveled the country and visited magnificent Scotland. She dreams of a time when life was simpler, the land rougher and the journey more rewarding. With her heart deeply rooted in the past and her mind always on adventure, McClintock still calls Montana home.

Holding Out for a Hero - lyrics by Bonnie Tyler
Cowboy image - purchased from Dreamstime