A Feather To Fly With now published and available for purchase!

Yes – at long last, here it is!

Feather Cover

“In Regency England, a young lady makes her fortune by marrying it. But Cleo Cooper has come to London with a different idea – she’s going to make her fortune by stealing it. Raised abroad by unconventional parents, Cleo has no use for the rules and strictures of the ton. She’ll pretend to fit in, but she has a secret scheme.

Arthur Ramsey, Duke of Winton, is in the market for a wife. He imagines a sweet, conformable young lady who will gracefully fill the role of Duchess, secure the succession with an heir, and not interfere with his scientific pursuits. That’s what he’s looking for – but what he finds is Cleo.”

(To repeat what I’ve said before, this is a traditional Regency. No sex, no vampires, no time travel. Humor in Regency high life.)

You can purchase A Feather to Fly With at Amazon

Or at Smashwords

Or at Barnes & Noble

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Publication Date! Plus snow. Plus dream.

Mark your calendars, Feather is coming! Yes, A Feather To Fly With will be published February 24th. Final proof, final tweaks, final formats, the end is in sight!

It’s a good thing I’ve had plenty to do around the house, because I haven’t left it except to shovel the walk and take out the dog since last Wednesday. Here in the east, we’re still digging out from what the Weather Channel calls Winter Storm Pax. (The Capital Weather Gang over at the Post calls it Snochi.) Today I’m going to attempt to get the car down the driveway – wish me luck.

We’ve had quite a few snows this year, but this was the first one deep enough to require shoveling. So I got out the old shovel and went to work, and I suddenly remembered a dream I had a few years ago. Bear with me, and I will share it with you.

I dreamed that Hogwarts had just started a new program – Adult Continuing Education! And a friend and I both got our Hogwarts letters; we were accepted to Hogwarts ACE! Well, as you can imagine, we were pretty excited.

We went down to Daigon Alley to get our school supplies. (And in a touch of verisimilitude, the regular Hogwarts students rather rolled their eyes at all these middle-aged frumps roaming the Alley clutching their Hogwarts letters and buying cauldrons and all that what-not.)

We got our supplies and then went to the broom shop, just to look. Of course, all the kids were oohing and ahhing over the Nimbuses and the Firebolts, but I murmured to my friend something I’d always thought about those brooms – “they look so uncomfortable!”

The sales clerk overheard that and said, “They are uncomfortable. The kids like them, but adults will want a more comfortable ride.” She took us to the back wall, and showed us a fine selection of — SNOW SHOVELS! (See how we got here from the sidewalk shoveling?)

With the magical snow shovels, you sit in the shovel part, and hold onto the handle. Doesn’t that make more sense? I tried one out and zoomed around the shop. It was obviously going to take some practice, but how much more comfy that balancing all your weight onto what the yoga instructors call your ‘sit bones’ on a broom handle!

I’ll leave you with this fine picture of Jazzy in the snow. You may, if you feel so inclined, imagine that I’m zooming about overhead on my magical snow shovel.

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Getting Excited? Cover art and blurb preview!

We inch closer to publication, and the excitement mounts! I think we’ve finally nailed down the cover and the blurb, so take a look.

First, here’s the cover:

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The artwork is Henri Francois Mulard’s Portrait of a Lady, circa 1810. When I saw this portrait, I was struck by its resemblance to my mental image of my heroine Cleo.

And who is Cleo? Well, you’ll have to read the book to find out, but the blurb gives a few clues:

“In Regency England, a young lady makes her fortune by marrying it. But Cleo Cooper has come to London with a different idea – she’s going to make her fortune by stealing it. Raised abroad by unconventional parents, Cleo has no use for the rules and strictures of the ton. She’ll pretend to fit in, but she has a secret scheme.

Arthur Ramsey, Duke of Winton, is in the market for a wife. He imagines a sweet, conformable young lady who will gracefully fill the role of Duchess, secure the succession with an heir, and not interfere with his scientific pursuits. That’s what he’s looking for – but what he finds is Cleo.”

Sound like fun? So where are we at? A few more text tweaks and then on to formatting for publication! I’m looking at mid-February at the latest.

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Here’s a preview of my upcoming Regency, A Feather To Fly With

Do you like traditional Regency romance? (Traditional? What does that mean? It means no sex scenes, no vampires, no time travel. But plenty of noble titles, Almack’s, ballrooms, and humor.) Then check out the first chapter of my upcoming traditional Regency, A Feather To Fly With:

 

A Feather To Fly With, Chapter One

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Catching up

It’s been a while, hasn’t it? And I have some achievements to tell you about.

First, since I know what my public likes, let’s start with a recent Jazzy picture:

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Here she is just back from the groomer. (Later that day she did some digging in the yard, but let’s just pass quietly over that.)

In the fall, we took a puppy obedience class. It was a bit of shock to go from a dog with nine years of training to a puppy (bouncy!) with zero years of training, but we both learned a lot. We do little training sessions around the house now, hope to be all impressive for the next class in the spring.

I got Jazzy a dog harness to ride in the back seat, so here is a growth series for you.

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She’s very good about it. I told her when I first put the harness on and she was so baffled about it that she’d love car rides, and it’s true.

In other news, remember that Regency romance novel I’ve been going on about for (ulp!) over a year now? It’s DONE! Well, not done done, but I actually got to the end of the story, and am now in edits. And my Art Department (waves to Jane) is hard at work on the cover art.

So mark your calendars, early in 2014 (January, I hope) look for the release of A Feather To Fly With.

And I’ve started work on a sequel!

Isn’t that exciting? I’m like a pup with a new stick!

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Jazzy and the Cats

So people ask me, ‘How are the cats and the puppy getting along?’. And I answer, pretty well, all things considered.

Pretty well means that no blood has been drawn. And all things considered means that for the first couple weeks, Jazzy was completely unable to control herself around the cats (AKA ‘the little black dogs who can fly‘).

She still finds the cats perplexing. They’re puppy sized but they simply won’t play puppy games. She keeps trying. But she has calmed down a bit.

For the first couple weeks, if a cat entered the room, Jazzy would turn into a circa 1965 teenybopper spotting a Beatle. “Ohmigod ohmigod ohmigod – he’s Right! There!” And then she’d leap at the cat with shrieks of joy and devotion, often knocking him down in the process. Not surprisingly, the Fab Two didn’t appreciate such treatment and would head for higher ground.

But she’s moderating that behavior somewhat. Sam seems to be training her. He will hang around the floor within reach and issue a correcting box to the ears if she pesters him too much. Sometimes I’ll see them both sitting on the floor absorbed in their own projects. Makes a mommy quietly proud. Even Liam is spending more time out on the floor, so progress is definitely being made.

Here’s a recent video of Jazzy and Sam. See the improvement? She’s merely being a pest, not a complete menace.

Jazzy and Sam

(I have to send you to Photobucket for the video, because WordPress doesn’t seem to want to upload a MOV file here.)

In other news (remember, I’m Jazzy’s Mommy, but I’m not JUST Jazzy’s Mommy), I’m trying to regain the threads of Real Life, all the other stuff I used to do pre-puppy. I’ve been going back to the pool and to tai chi class.

And try not to get your hopes up too much, but I’ve actually written a bit more on The Book! Not a lot, though – I’m getting to the tricky part, where all the characters are in motion and there are three or four different misconceptions in play about what is going on. And I have to consult maps and make sure I’m not getting people places faster than horses could take them there, and though this is the exciting and dangerous part, I need to also keep in mind that this is romantic comedy and there still needs to be an element of humor involved. Whole lotta moving parts. So I frequently just throw up my hands and leave the computer to go out to the yard and throw a tennis ball for my dog.

Not that there’s anything wrong with that.

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Houston…

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We have Earlift!

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