Beach Book Blast & For The Love of Reading

If you read my post from earlier today, I mentioned that the geese and ducks were gathering. I’m not ready for winter, but I’m sure ready to leave the gardening, painting, and building behind. So for a few days, I’m dreaming of vacation and taking part in the WG2E Street Team’s Beach Book Blast. To find out more about the event, go to the Beach Book Blast website at Prizes include a Kindle Fire, ebooks, and more!

In honor of the Beach Book Blast, I’m reposting the very first blog post I ever wrote … For The Love Of Reading.

I inherited my nose from my dad. I also inherited his calves, his easy going personality and his love of reading. He died in 2009 but my all time favourite picture of him shows him sitting on the beach in a lawn chair, a book in his hands with the sun shining down on his head.

The first book I remember holding was a beautiful hardcover copy of Cinderella, filled with strange words I couldn’t read and beautiful pictures I adored. Once I learned to read, I worked my way through Dick and Jane, on to Nancy Drew and the Hardy Boys, and in between, the back of every cereal box my mom ever bought.

When I ran out of reading material, I would sneak into my dad’s book stash, which he wisely kept in the garage, and read his Harlequin romances. He also had some racier novels there, stories with – gasp! – sex, and if my mom knew I was reading those books – heck, if she knew my dad was reading those books – she would have banned them from our reading material.

These days I’m allowed to read whatever I want and I want to read a lot. In fact, I want to read more than I have time for and I’d rather buy books than food or clothes.

Shortly before my dad died, he gave me the book Volcano by Richard Doyle. When he told me I had to read this book, there was a tone in his voice that I recognized so well. It was awe and wonder for a can’t-put-it-down story, emotions I too experience whenever I fall in love with a story or an author’s voice. Although I have yet to read the book – I’ve become more of a love-to-laugh-out-loud reader – Volcano will forever remain on my keeper shelf because it was the last time my dad shared his love of reading with me.

This is how I will always remember my dad, on a lawn chair on the beach with a book in his hands and another waiting to be read. This is, hopefully, how my children will remember me, too.

So who did you inherit your reading gene from? Who are some of your favourite authors and books? And if you had to choose, would you rather spend your hard earned money on books or food and clothes?

On Aug 16, from 8:00 PM to 11:00 PM EST, join our Facebook party.

And make sure to check out the Summer Launch Event page where all the books highlight during this event are listed.

See you there!

The Middle of Summer

While Christy faces The End of Summer, up on the Canadian prairies, we’re smack in the middle of our summer season. And it’s been a hot, humid summer with temperatures close to 90 degrees F (30 C).

I know. Some of you are laughing at me right now. But to this Canadian, the 90 degree temperature is as bad as minus 40 in the middle of a winter blizzard.

This year on Seabrook’s pond, there’s no time to dilly-dally and hide from the heat. We decided to spruce up our duck pond by adding a fountain.

Except we discovered the trees we’d planted 19 years ago blocked our view, so we needed to move them. The man with his head in the tree mover is my husband. His self-assigned job was to ensure no branches were lost in the process.

Then we figured we needed a viewing area, somewhere closer to the pond than our back deck, a place we could sit and watch the ducks and their ducklings without frightening them into their hiding spot in the trees. We filled in the tree holes, built a wooden border, and started digging.

The plan had grown from installing the fountain and moving two trees to visions of flowerbeds, benches, and a tiny gardening shed surrounded by cedars and shrubs.

Sometimes in the middle of summer, when the temperature and humidity are soaring, and I’m standing on the top of a ladder sweating my butt off, I really miss winter.

So what do you dislike most about your favorite season that makes you long for the days of your least-liked season?

Originally published at the Women Unplugged blog.

Summer Vacation

It’s that time of year, when people head out on the road for some family fun. But with our children grown, we stay at home during the busy summer months of July and August. It’s a good time to catch up on yard work, especially since we have such a short growing season in the Canadian north.

So while others fight the crowded roads or beaches, this is what I’m doing.

I’ll be back in August with a post to tell you all about the back breaking work on my summer vacation. It’s going to be beautiful … someday. 🙂

In the meantime, stay safe and enjoy your summer. I’m enjoying ours.

Wedding Fever by Sheila Seabrook

Wedding Fever by Sheila Seabrook

Book 22 of the Bandit Creek series has finally arrived and – you guessed it – it’s WEDDING FEVER by Sheila Seabrook. What? Not surprised? You mean someone let out my secret? 🙂

First off, WEDDING FEVER is a novella, like the rest of the Bandit Creek books. I had a blast writing this story. Well, not for the first four chapters … but then something special happened. That magic that happens when I’m glaring at my computer screen, wondering why I ever chose this writerly profession, and wishing it was time to clean toilets instead.

Story Magic. Where does it come from? And do I really care? Yeah, I do, because without the magic, writing a story is just plain hard work. And that’s exactly how WEDDING FEVER began.

But then I started to write Chapter Four and Liz’s daughter popped onto the pages of my manuscript. She was fully formed and naughty with a smart mouth that reminded me of the days when I had teenagers living in my house. You love them, but then they open their mouth …

But I’m getting off topic. You’re here to find out about my story.

If you’ve already checked out my Books page, then you can skip down to the end of this post where I tell you all about the Facebook party and prizes. But for those of you who haven’t read the book blurb, I’ll repeat it here:

WEDDING FEVER by Sheila Seabrook

Bandit Creek’s star reporter is about to have her life turned upside down!

Liz Templeton lives a quiet life with her mother, her mother’s best friend, her boss, and – oh yeah – the ghost of her teenage daughter. When her ex-husband returns to town to hunt for the legendary Lost Lake treasure, she doesn’t count on the pair of matchmaking mothers who are planning her wedding or her daughter’s obsession with the man who might be her dad.

Liz has one chance to stop her family from driving her insane … and falling head over heels in love with her ex isn’t part of the plan.


“Sheila Seabrook’s WEDDING FEVER is a romantic tale involving sunken treasure, lost love, and a ghost that will capture your heart. Once this story has you in its grip, it won’t let go!”Julie Rowe, author of ICEBOUND and NORTH OF HEARTBREAK.

I hope you love reading this story as much as I loved writing it. I laughed. I cried. And I didn’t want to say goodbye to the characters. And if you enjoy WEDDING FEVER, then check out the prequel, a short story titled BABY FEVER, which is part of the Bandit Creek Fool’s Gold anthology.

Before you run off to enjoy your Sunday, come celebrate the release of WEDDING FEVER with me. Pop over to the Bandit Creek Books site and read Carla Roma’s interview with me, check out the excerpt from WEDDING FEVER, buy the book and join the Bandit Creek authors for the Facebook release party where I’m giving away three (3) copies of WEDDING FEVER. I’m also a guest blogger on the RG2E site today where I’m talking about my love of books.

On the first and fifteenth of the month, check back for more new Bandit Creek books. There’s something at Bandit Creek for everybody!

Connect with me on Facebook and Twitter. And if you’re interested in hearing more about my writing adventures, then sign up for emails updates from this blog through the Subscribe link on the right sidebar.

Until next time, enjoy whatever book you’re reading!

Story Magic

It happens when you least expect it, usually days or weeks or months after you need it. Whether I’m reading a book or writing one, there’s a moment when the magic of the story hits me and I’m swept up into the lives of the people on the page.

While I was writing my upcoming indie release WEDDING FEVER, I experienced this marvelous phenonmenon. I started the story with a bang, but by the time I reached chapter four, I was mired in the boredom of my own story.

So I stopped.

I stared at the computer screen for a while, folded some laundry, vacuumed the house, then went web surfing. Meanwhile, our own Sharla Lovelace announced her—then upcoming—book THE REASON IS YOU.

So I read the blurb.

The Reason Is You by Sharla Lovelace

The Reason Is You by Sharla Lovelace

In the small river town of Bethany, Dani Shane never fit in. Being different pushed her to the fringes of society, and even leaving town for two decades didn’t stop the talk. Now, with her sixteen year-old daughter Riley in tow, Dani is back in Bethany looking for a fresh start. Too bad her plans for staying under the radar are about to be thrown out the window.

Mischievous and sexy, Dani’s old friend Alex still has the power to rock her world, but there’s a big obstacle standing in their way–Alex has been dead for forty years. With a ghost popping up at inopportune moments and sparking conversations with her teenage daughter, Dani scrambles to find solid ground and get a grip–both on her sanity and her heart.

Somewhere between “With a ghost popping up at inopportune moments…” and “…sparking conversations with her teenage daughter…”, a new character, fully formed, popped into my thoughts. One who brought my story alive. One who caused my heroine both happiness and grief. One who would ultimately reveal the secrets of the past and help my heroine find true love again.

(In case you’re wondering, my character is very different from Sharla’s Alex, except for the ghost part and the snarky part. :))

From that moment on, WEDDING FEVER wrote itself. I laughed, I cried, and when I typed the end, I knew I had found my story magic.

But then I finished the book and started a new one. And now I’m looking for some new magic.

Where will I find it? Under the fridge? Within the pages of a magazine? Or perhaps one day I’ll stumble across two phrases that when put together, work their wonderful and mysterious magic on my brain.

If you’re looking to kill a few minutes on the internet this Sunday, join me for the Bandit Creek release party for WEDDING FEVER. The link will be on my blog Sunday morning. I’ll be giving away three (3) copies of the ebook. Hope to see you there!

If you’re a writer, where do you find your story magic lurking? And if you’re a reader, what makes a story magical for you?

(Originally published on Women Unplugged.)


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