Top Ten Favorites of Country Living

In honor of our newest release, Cowboy Desire, I thought I might share my top ten favorite parts of farm/country living. When I was little, I had the pleasure of living on a small farm out in the country. We were about 20 minutes from the city of Port Alberni. So in no particular order, I give you my top ten favorites:

  • DARK

Currently I live in a suburb of Vancouver, British Columbia. My street is lit up almost as bright as daylight at night. We can see stars, but no milky way, even meteors are hard to see. One of my favorite things to do was put down a blanket and just watch the sky, but it loses its magic in the city.

  • QUIET

Cities are busy places, full of people, cars and activity. You don’t really get a moment’s peace unless you’re hidden out at home. Back when I was little, there was no internet, and we only had three television stations that I can remember…unless you had a satellite dish, then you could get more. More often than not, I was stuck with my own thoughts, which meant I had a lot of writing time.

  • ANIMALS

My parents never had a big farm. We only had rabbits and chickens, but I loved my rabbits. We had Angora, Orange and Dutch rabbits. Did you know rabbits are trainable? Mine would go up the stairs if I patted the step and would come to me if I patted the ground. I still miss him. I tried buying rabbits so my own kids could have the experience, but, sadly, our rental suite doesn’t allow animals. We never had horses, but my neighbor did, and I enjoyed riding them. Almost broke my ribs, but that’s a story for another day.

There’s also never-ending wildlife. We even encountered a cougar once when we tried sleeping outside in a tent in our yard. They really do sound like people say they do, babies. We didn’t stay in the tent for long.

  • THE VIEW

The air is so much clearer when you are surrounded by trees, and water and nature. The unbridled views of the mountains and waterfalls. No smog. No tall buildings to get in the way. You can sit on your porch and watch a beautiful sunset falling over the mountain. There is a purity there that’s untouched.

  • HOMEGROWN FRESH FOOD

You can’t forget fresh garden vegetables. Tomatoes, carrots, potatoes. I’d say cucumbers, but I hate them. *lol* And then, you have fresh eggs and fresh meat. I never liked the killing part personally, but you really are self-sufficient when out on a farm. No one wants to make non-stop runs into the city.

  • PURE WATER

Have you ever travelled between different places and noticed how the water tastes disgusting? Where we lived, we had fresh mountain water, some of the freshest around. There are some benefits to having a well and being away from factories that can pollute it.

  • LESS SOLICITORS

People are less likely to come calling when you are hidden and out of the way. Some might be desperate, but most stick closer to home. Granted, soliciting happens more online now. You add someone to your friend’s list on social media and it comes with a request to buy whatever they are selling…unless it’s a book, I probably won’t be interested.

  • RIDE-EM LAWN MOWERS

When you have an acreage, the last thing you wanna do is use a regular lawn mower. Before you learn to drive a car, you learn to drive the machinery that comes with a farm. I was never able to cut the lawn, but I was allowed to ride it around—oh, the power…*lol*

  • TREE HOUSES

One of the best benefits of country living is that you’re surrounded by great big trees, branches so thick that they can hold the weight of a miniature house. We had a rope with knots tied in it which we would climb to the top. I don’t think I’d ever make it up the rope these days, but I really loved climbing trees back in the day when my body worked properly.

  • COWBOYS

Men in those tight jeans, with their long sleeve shirts rolled up to the elbow. Their faces holding that 5 o’clock shadow because they are busy keeping the farm running. Men who could grace the cover of a magazine, but are hidden away in the country. Are you ready to meet a few, or a cowgirl perhaps? If you don’t live on a farm, I hope you’ll dream with us between the covers of Cowboy Desire.


Cowboy Desire is an eclectic assortment of short stories.

It includes contemporary, historical, fantasy, and even outer space romance, Cowboy Desire offers fourteen stunning short stories. These fourteen authors provide a range of sweet to sexy stories all with a Western cowboy theme. They feature strong men and women battling the weather and dangerous terrain, here on earth and in outer space.

The collection is as diverse as the authors who wrote them. Here’s a chance to discover new talented authors and the characters they create. Within these pages, there are blends of tender, often moving, thought-provoking and downright sexy stories.


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Believe in Yourself

By this time last year, I only had three stories published:

“Her Lover’s Face” (Novel)
“Wanted: Courage” (Flashpoint: The Inner Circle Writers’ Group Flash Fiction Anthology 2018)
“Never Far Away” (Rapture: The Inner Circle Writers’ Group Flash Fiction Anthology 2018)

It’s amazing what can happen in a year. I’ve had a number of ups and downs since June of last year, non-writing experiences that could have made me give up again, overwhelmed by my challenges; but, if there is one legacy I want to leave my kids, it is that no matter what happens in your life, you never give up and you never quit. Follow after your dreams and never let anything stop you. Did you get knocked down? Well, get back up and try again. No one else can forge your path for you. You have to find the strength inside yourself.

In the last year, I had the following stories/poetry published:

“The Stranger” (poem published on Spillwords)
“Love Knows No Apocalypse” (Mystic Desire: a Supernatural Anthology)
“Love from the Mist” (Mystic Desire, a Supernatural Anthology)
“Not You Again!” (Novel)
“The Dinner Call” (OCEANS: A Dark Microfiction Anthology (Dark Drabbles Book 9)
“The Ocean’s Thief” ( OCEANS: A Dark Microfiction Anthology (Dark Drabbles Book 9)
“Poseidon’s Revenge” (Forgotten Ones: Drabbles of Myth and Legend)
“Into the Fire” (Slow Burn: The Fires That Bind Us Charity Anthology)

“Patricia Elliott” (Who’s Who of Emerging Writers 2020)

Upcoming publications:

“The Handcuff Proposal” (a novelette being published in a Black Velvet Seductions anthology)

I also have four, just about five, completed novels and two novellas that need editing, and another series I’m working on that revolves around a zombie apocalypse, in which two stories are already done. And I have two other series in mind. I guess the point of my blog post is that we can live our lives dreaming, wishing we were doing something, or we can get out and do it.

Has someone told you that your dream isn’t realistic? Show them that all you need is motivation to prove them wrong. Want to be a doctor? A writer? An astronaut? Then it’s up to you to set that in motion and never give up, even when the road gets tough. Life will always try to throw you curve-balls, and some of them will be doozies, trust me I know, but you can’t let the negative experiences determine your path.

Rise above them! Life is what you make it. I believe in you.


“The one thing that you have that nobody else has is you. Your voice, your mind, your story, your vision. So write and draw and build and play and dance and live as only you can.” – Neil Gaiman


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Crazy World

As we wrestle our way through Covid-19, it’s easy to forget about other circumstances that preceded it, and I want to make sure that Australia hasn’t been forgotten about. Just before things went down with this new virus, these pictures were all over the internet and social media sites:

Our hearts broke for Australia. Many lives were lost and properties were destroyed. Men and women worked tirelessly to save what they could. I couldn’t imagine being on the front lines of something like that. It’s hard when you are trained to do a job, but, yet, feel powerless to do it against such a brutal force of nature. Still, the first responders didn’t give up. They worked hard—endlessly—but the job doesn’t end with them. Rebuilding and bringing life back to a devastated land takes support from everyone.

And to help do that, thirteen authors and Little Quail Press have banded together to bring you

Slow Burn

a charity anthology called Slow Burn. All proceeds from the sales of this book will go to the NSW Rural Fire Service to help support the First Responders in their efforts to rebuild and protect their amazing country. We would like to ask you to join with us and get twelve Australia-based stories in the process for your reading enjoyment. It’s a win-win in my eyes. 😀

“Australia is burning, and the heroes between these pages are going to save it. Amazing authors have banded together to bring you smoking hot firefighter romances to support bush fire relief. From rural Australian settings to the world of mages and shifters, these stories will have you heating up — for more than one reason.

Proceeds from this anthology go towards the NSW Rural Fire Services to help rebuild after the devastation of our summer bushfire season here in Australia.”

Official release date: May 31, 2020 (currently up for pre-order)

Click here to purchase Slow Burn

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Stranded

I think every traveler around the world has probably wondered what would happen if their boat sank or their plane crashed, and they somehow magically survived the disaster. I’m one of those people who can take a stone and turn it into a deadly projectile, hurling it towards the cars behind me. Okay, not literally, but my mind has a bad habit of weaving tales that feel awfully real sometimes.

I guess that’s why I started writing stories, aside from being bullied relentlessly. All the horrid tales of my subconscious needed a place to vent and what better way than on paper. Haha, I’m probably sounding a little like a psycho now. I’m normal, honest. 😉

When I heard about the chance to participate in a supernatural romance anthology with other BVS authors that would be released around Halloween, I jumped at the chance. But I didn’t just want to just do a supernatural romance, I wanted to bring the dead to life and make your heart beat just a little bit faster. And I’m pretty certain that happened to Jace when a storm made his ride just a little bumpy…

Enjoy this short excerpt from “Love from the Mist,” featured in the anthology “Mystic Desire”:

The plane was falling as fast as his heart was beating, sounding like a drum inside his head. Unlike plane crashes on television, they were spinning as they headed straight for the ocean below. Fighting hard to stay standing, the stewardess instructed them to put on the life vests.

Jace helped his neighbor put it on and then put on his own. Over the loudspeaker, a voice boomed into the already noisy cabin. “Follow the steward’s instructions.”

He let go of the woman and gripped the seat in front of him, leaning his head forward.

“I don’t wanna die,” a male voice cried out above the noise.

Jace echoed the man’s sentiment, but he knew the odds. They were going to hit the ground fast and hard. Chances of survival…nada. His heart raced and his palms grew damp, and it felt like everything had begun moving in slow motion, as though someone hit the frame by frame button.

He took a moment to look over each fear-filled face, eyes wide and full of tears. Parents cradled their children. Lovers held each other one more time. Friends said their good-byes. And he, he was alone.

“Brace for impact!”

—-

If you found yourself in this position and you actually survived the crash, landing on a deserted island, what would you do first? What would you hope to find when you open your eyes? Post your answers in the comments below.

If you are interested in reading more of the story and would also love to check out the many other wonderful authors in the anthology, click this link:

Amazon

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Zombie Apocalypse Attire

What attire do you think of when it comes to the Zombie apocalypse? Are you the practice type that would only choose the things that would benefit you, or would you say, heck with it, and wear whatever you want, anyway?

For me, I think I’d wear much the same as Samantha in the following sample of Love Knows No Apocalypse:

—-

“I have to get this baby food back to Naomi.” Samantha grabbed a backpack off the backseat. “We’re only about thirty minutes away.”

“We’ll get drenched.”

“Are you afraid of the rain, Stevey?”

He looked down at his Hawaiian t-shirt and matching shorts, and she had to laugh. If you couldn’t be in Hawaii, dressing like it was the next best thing he had told her.

She shook her head. “You were the one who wanted to wear it. I told you to be practical.”

The storms of Autumn were upon them, and they weren’t overly pretty. The warm weather for wearing t-shirts and shorts was long gone, but she loved the rain and being covered up. That’s why she was wearing a pair of utility pants and a compression shirt, and her favorite leather jacket. She grabbed a pink Nike jacket that she’d found for Naomi off the floor. It was on the larger side. “Try this,” she said.

Steve shook his head and recoiled from her offer. “If I walk into the house wearing that, I’ll never live it down.”

Sam laughed. “Suit yourself.”

Why cargo pants? Well, they have endless pockets for storing things and are super comfortable. And as for the leather jacket, zombies can’t bite through leather; at least, not to my knowledge. It’s not a theory I’d want to test though. I like breathing, thank you.

Now, in contrast, Steve isn’t as practical as Samantha. Stubborn man would rather wear what his flowery Hawaiian shirts to remind himself of yesteryear. But make no mistake, he’s alert and very much on the ball.

With being an apocalypse, you’re not complete without a weapon. What would you use? I’ve had my experience with a variety of weapons—staff, sword, bow. My favorite would have to be the sword, as long as it’s nice and sharp. The only downside is having to get up close and personal with the undead. Getting splattered by them is not my idea of a good time.

So let’s hear what you think. Share with me your zombie attire.

Love Knows No Apocalypse Blurb:

“Getting stranded in the middle of a storm was not Samantha Wheeler’s idea of an ideal situation, especially in a zombie apocalypse. But fighting zombies was the easy part; her heart, though, was a whole other matter. Thanks to a man named Steve Jones.

When they find themselves in danger, she has to decide what’s more important – dying for someone you love or surviving.”

To buy Mystic Desire, click the link below:

Amazon

Thanks for reading 😀

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