A FREE cookbook & the countdown rocks on!

 

7 more sleeps ’til A Sharla Brown Christmas debuts in Love, Christmas 2!  I feel a bit like Snoopy, twirling about my office in one *happy dance* after another! I am so, so, SO excited to be part of this collection of 26-all new Christmas romances, and with just 10 more sleeps until launch day, you won’t have to wait long to find out what all my warm fuzzy excitement is about! 🙂 It was weird (though sooo fun) for me to slip away from River’s Sigh B & B this year and write in a new world about unconnected people and places. I hope you love Sharla’s story as much as I enjoyed sharing it!

PRE-ORDER LOVE, CHRISTMAS 2 TODAY FOR JUST .99 cents!

AMAZON US ~ AMAZON UK ~ AMAZON CA
AMAZON AU ~ AMAZON IN ~ NOOK ~ KOBO ~
iBOOKS

The other authors and I have tons of celebrations in the works, including this fun glimpse into some of the goodies mentioned each story. Now you don’t have to drool while you read; you can cook up the same recipes your favorite characters are enjoying while you gobble up their stories.

😍 GRAB YOUR FREE RECIPE BOOK! 😍

AMAZON ~ KOBO ~ iBOOKS ~ NOOK

Stay tuned for more fun *happy dance* worthy news!

#mgtab, #99cents, #romancereads, #ChristmasIsComing, #ChristmasCountdown, #HolidayRomance

New Year Plans, er . . .

I was on a mission at Walmart the other day, with my aunt who is only two years older than me. Our search for whatever-it-was (I can’t remember the item now) was hijacked, however—though I didn’t realize it until my aunt burst out laughing.

“You really can’t help yourself, can you?” she exclaimed.

“What?” I asked, genuinely confused.

“You are totally ogling those spiral bound notebooks. You’re obsessed.”

Oops! Caught. What could I say? She was right. Even now, at the ripe young age of 46, I can’t help myself. Every fall, I am lured by the seductive cry of the wild—if “wild” can be used to describe the seasonal overflow of pre-sharpened pencils, whimsical erasers, bags of pens, fluorescent sticky notes, sketchpads, notebooks (yep, with spiral bindings being especially alluring), and other crucial necessities.

We shared a chuckle at my expense and like the mature adult I am, I refrained from putting even one super fun notebook in my cart, and got back on task. (Just what that task was still alludes me because I spent the rest of the time in the store wondering if the notebook I had my eye on would still be there by the time I could get back to it.*)

Anyway, I’m not actually writing to reveal my weirdly intense penchant for spiral bound notebooks. Instead I want to explain why I so earnestly seek them out. I blame it on the school system. No, seriously. All those formative years spent shopping for school supplies, reviewing class schedules, and marking up day planners, created monster-Ev—a completely non-mythical beast, who craves nothing more than purple ink and a year-at-a-glance calendar once the leaves start to change.

September always seems like the “official” start of a new year for me, and while I spend time in January reflecting back and looking ahead, fall is where my obsessive self really goes to town. (Only figuratively, of course. Literally, I’m on the couch, coffee close by, shiny new notebook in hand.)

And this year, taking stock of where I am and what I’m doing—and carving out time to do some planning and mapping—seems especially important. I have goals and re-envisioned dreams on every front, it seems: Home. Family. Friends. Health. Work. Community. I kind of feel the way I did when I moved from elementary school to junior high—like I’m on the cusp of a big change or a new stage of development. Dang it, that definitely calls for neon highlighters!

I’m being light-hearted and silly about it, but part of me feels anything but (kind of like how in the week or two before starting a new job or taking a class, you’re simultaneously fidgety with giddy excitement and gut-sickening dread).

Some seasons call for pulling back, to rest, restore, rejuvenate. Other seasons we need to push, to grow, to go, go, go! (I suspect I’ve given away which one I’m experiencing.)

Most of all, I regularly plan and prioritize, evaluate and possibly restructure, consider and recommit to—or dump—things because I’m keenly conscious of quickly time passes—and in the words of Annie Dillard, “How we spend our days is, of course, how we spend our lives.” I hope I have decades ahead of me, but if I only have years, or months, or even weeks . . . I want to make sure I’m doing what I want or need to be doing—and life isn’t static. Different phases and stages call for different focuses.

Happy New Year—I mean, autumn. I hope your plans and schedules have you filled with excitement, optimism, and renewed energy—and if they don’t? Well, maybe you need a rest or a change . . . Either way, you definitely need to splurge on a new notebook and get to work.

*P.S. You can rest easy tonight, with no need to lie awake in tortured suspense. My dream spiral bound notebook was not gone! I returned to the store later that week, and—phew!—got the one my heart desired. It was a close call, though. There had been tons of the style I wanted, and I got the last one!

– – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – –

“New Year Plans, er . . . ” by me, Ev Bishop, was originally published in the Terrace Standard, October 4, 2018 as my monthly column “Just a Thought.”

😍 26 all new Christmas romances for .99 cents! Don’t miss out! 😍

In case you missed my last happy blurt, I want to blurt again! I have super fun news. My new Christmas novella, A SHARLA BROWN CHRISTMAS, is debuting in Love, Christmas 2 along with 26 other brand-new holiday romances!


It’s up for pre-order now for just .99 cents. Talk about crazily merry, hey?! 😍 😍

The contributing authors and I are celebrating our festive set in a variety of ways and hope you’ll get in on the fun.

Festivity 1: A super fun (and easy) Rafflecopter contest with tons of prizes, including a $50.00 Amazon gift card. Play today!


A bit about the set . . . Each title is exclusive to this set and was inspired by a favorite holiday movie, then spun into a fantastic love story by award-winning bestselling authors. The result? A must-have romance collection full of good cheer for the upcoming holiday season. 

 

Here’s the tiniest peek into what each story you’re going to devour is about!

 

Christmas shouldn’t be the loneliest time of the year… 

 

Finding herself in a run-down apartment in a seedy section of a new-to-her town, single mom Sharla Brown is down in the dumps and thoroughly discouraged. Hoping to cheer herself and others, she decides to throw a community Christmas Eve party—and receives a heartbreakingly negative initial response.

 

Mimi Barbour – A Wonderful Life – Though Rylee works with troubled teens, can she and an angel help a man living a nightmare?

 

Leanne Banks – A Royal White Christmas – Can a secret prince be a Christmas wish-come-true for a small-town girl?

Joan Reeves – Brianna’s Season For Miracles – Her seductive persona hides what she’s ashamed of… What will happen if the man she’s fallen for discovers her secret?

Mona Risk – Jingle With My Princess – The doc and the princess… He saves lives, but she may save his heart.

Rebecca York – Can She Get Home for Christmas? – Will a killer stop her from getting home for Christmas?

Jacquie Biggar – Mistletoe Inn – A grieving man finds the greatest gift is love.

Alicia Street – Miracle on Christmas Tree Street – A single mom discovers her business partner is more than he seems.

Nancy Radke – The Holiday (Christmas) – Jodi’s house-swap to Maui came with a small dog and a shipwrecked sailor.

Katy Walters –Letters from the Snowman – The snow revealed a precious love.

Stephanie Queen – Holiday Affair – Melissa goes from riches to rags but will she find gold in a holiday affair?

Aileen Fish – Christmas in Connecticut – Can a wounded warrior learn to trust her celebrity chef crush after discovering his secret?

Rachelle Ayala – A Christmas Creek Carol – A reclusive writer is given a one-star review on her life by characters from her past, present, and future.

Dani Haviland – The Polar Xpress – She prefers dogs to men…until she rescues the doctor.

Traci Hall – Love, Actually (By the Sea) – Two strangers. One intimate night. Reunited a year later, can it actually be love?

Taylor Lee – The Ref-er-ee – With a family this discombobulated, it will take a referee to save their Christmas.

Donna Fasano – Her Mr. Miracle – It’s Christmas Eve and Veronica is stuck in a nearly deserted seaside town… She needs a miracle.

Cynthia Cooke – A Christmas to Remember – A Christmas storm. Wedding plans in peril. Has a lost love been found?

Susan Jean Ricci – A Joyous Holiday Inn – Can Twigg restore the joy of Christmas to Chloe’s indifferent heart?

Tamara Ferguson – Two Hearts Home for Christmas – Can a long ago promise of love bring two lonely wounded warriors home for Christmas?

Suzanne Jenkins – Christmas with the Clouds – Tracy isn’t interested in love until an unexpected Christmas visitor changes her heart.

Natalie Ann – How Gavin Stole Christmas – Can Jolene help Gavin find the Christmas spirit when he’s the epitome of Mr. Bah Humbug?

Alyssa Bailey – In the Spirit of Christmas – Chase can protect Tara from danger, but can he protect his heart?

Stacy Eaton – Finding Love on Christmas Vacation – Christmas isn’t the same for Lucy without her father…until she meets his friend Maverick.

Jen Talty – The Christmas Getaway – A mix-up in reservations leaves a mother and her son to share a cabin with a broken-hearted stranger.

Melinda De Ross – Boyfriend Wanted for Christmas – A thirty-something singleton’s desperate yet humorous quest to find a boyfriend in the seven days before Christmas.

Pre-Order Love, Christmas 2: Movies You Love at these great stores! 

Amazon US  
Amazon UK 
B&N (Nook) 
iBooks 
Kobo 

 

 

 

 

Festivity 2! Want to sneak some sweet first chapters to further entice and delight you?! Your wish is granted. Grab Love, Christmas 2 Book Bites FREE and enjoy the first chapters of each 26 stories. (Yes, you will be left wanting more, LOL. Enjoy!)

Amazon ~ B&N (Nook) ~ Kobo

 

 

Ho ho ho – Merry August! #Excited #mgtab #holidays #ChristmasIsComing #romancebook #ChristmasCountdown #99cents

It’s been a while since I shared a newsy blurt because what I’ve been working on is top secret! (Okay, that’s a lie to make myself feel interesting, LOL. 😁 My current work-in-progress is not, has never been, top secret or even bottom secret—but it has been very fun!)

I spent our record-breaking hot summer writing and editing a cozy Christmas story. (Yes, it was surreal to fantasize about things like snow-crisp nights, hot chocolate and snuggling under fuzzy blankets in front of a blazing fireplace, while I was living in my bathing suit and sarong, with sweat beading down my back like a permanent accessory, but I digress…)

The exciting news is—drum roll, please—

My novella A SHARLA BROWN CHRISTMAS will be coming out October 16, 2018 in a super fun box set collection called LOVE, CHRISTMAS II that features 26 all-new Christmas romances, written by award-winning New York Times, USA Today, and Amazon bestselling authors.

Each original novel in the set was somehow inspired by its author’s favorite Christmas movie. (I suspect you’ve figured out which oldie-but-goodie, favorite-of-favorites that A SHARLA BROWN CHRISTMAS nods to. Good grief, what a smart guesser you are!)

As for how  the cartoon plays into my story or what the zany crew inspired…well, you’ll just have to read it to find out—which brings me to what might be the most exciting part for you! LOVE, CHRISTMAS II is available for pre-order for only .99 cents! Buy it now and you’ll be all set for a fall and winter full of sweet, cozy reads.

AMAZON.COM ~ AMAZON.CA ~ AMAZON.CO.UK ~ AMAZON.AU 

KOBO ~ iBOOKS ~  NOOK 

Just go there…wherever “there” is.

Sunset at Sheridan Lake. Photo credit: Brittany Higginson

I was sitting on the porch of a lovely log cabin on the banks of Sheridan Lake, taking in Loon Bay—a blue jewel of water, surrounded by emerald forests—the location of my family reunion. Birds chattered and called, and a soft flow of happy campers and relatives drifted past, walking dogs, carrying fishing rods, and chasing toddlers. It was one of those perfect moments and all I could think was, I can’t believe I had cold feet and wanted to duck out on this lovely lake holiday. What is my glitch?

While I was thinking on this—my bizarre habit of dreading events that I know I will love once they actually happen—my cousin’s 11-year-old son, who I’ll call H, popped into view. He was gently tugging my aunt’s stubborn little black dog, Petey, on a leash; Petey was tugging back, not as gently, in the opposite direction. H tried to urge the dog on, whispering kind, encouraging things.

Petey sat down, then leaned back, straining in the direction they’d just come as hard as he could.

H picked Petey up and carried him a few steps, but Petey, in squirmy resistance mode, made travelling very far that way impossible.

Visibly disappointed, H set Petey down again and resumed trying to beg, bribe, and coax the dog down the road.

I said something ridiculously obvious like, “Trying to take him for a walk?”

“Yeah,” H said glumly. “But he knows the way back to his campsite and as long as he can tell where it is and where Auntie T is, he won’t quit trying to stay there.”

I commiserated and H finished wistfully, “If I could get him to the forest trails, he’d forget about the campsite and he’d have fun. He did yesterday.”

With that, H was off again, valiantly continuing his quest to cajole Petey into enjoying a new adventure. “I’m sorry, I know this is kind of mean,” he whispered—then threw a dog treat a few feet, only to snatch it up and toss it again just as Petey ran forward to get it.

This strategy worked for a few metres and they disappeared from view—but Petey quickly caught on to the trick. A few minutes later he reappeared, high stepping at a good clip in the direction of “home.” Behind him, shoulders slumped, face a picture of dejection, came H.

Maybe I’m a bad person, but I had to laugh. “I take it you couldn’t get him to the forest?”

H sighed heavily. “No.” Then, as if talking to himself not to me, he muttered, “If he’d just go there, he’d like it.”

They went on their way, Petey continuing to prance like he’d taken first prize in some prestigious dog show, H wearing a Charlie Brown look of resignation.

I couldn’t help but feel there was a lesson for me in the dog’s ridiculous behaviour.

All too often, despite knowing how I end up enjoying and benefiting from them, I waste a lot of time worrying and feeling anxious about upcoming parties, workshops, conferences . . . or pretty much any event that pulls me out of the comfort of my homebody ways. Like the little curmudgeon Petey, I balk at new opportunities and dig my heels in when confronted by change.

Unlike Petey, however, I’ve learned that avoiding the discomfort of the unknown only leads to disappointment.

When I let myself be tricked by the seductive comfort of “safe” and familiar and fall prey to the temptation to hermit myself away, I am always sorry. Not going, not trying, not taking the unknown path, feels like failure. Conversely, I never regret—and have never regretted—pushing past my anxiety, fear of failure—and any other neuroses I have—to tackle new-to-me terrain in my social life or work life. Even when a situation, event, or journey “fails,” I feel stronger or better for having tried. Nothing ventured, nothing gained, right?

I know I’ll have failures of nerve in the future. I’ll keep working through them though, perhaps with a modified version of H’s muttered admonition to Petey: “Just go there. You’ll have fun. You’ll love it, actually.”

– – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – –

“Just Go There” by me, Ev Bishop, was originally published in the Terrace Standard, August 3, 2018 as my monthly column “Just a Thought.”

 

1st Friday Fun – August 3, 2018! Comment for a chance to win! #mgtab #bookgiveaways

Hooray and happy August! It’s the first Friday of a new month already, it’s also time for another giveaway time here at evbishop.com.

This month’s giveaway: Three signed copies of Spoons! That’s right: this month 3 lucky winners will get a signed paperback in the mail. (Imagine! Postal mail that’s not just another bill. So fun, right!? 😄)

How to enter for your chance to win: Comment/reply to this post. Seriously, that’s it!

COMMENT SUGGESTION: *Describe your dream library and/or share what character (or author) would be the librarian in your personal literary paradise.

(You can, of course, add anything else you want, so long as it’s appropriate for all ages. 🙂 🙂 )

WHEN DOES THIS MONTH’S GIVEAWAY CLOSE? August 15, 2018. Please share this post because the more that play, the merrier, right?

P.S. A huge congrats to last month’s (July 2018) lucky winner: Pat Hansen!

P.P.S. Haven’t taken part in Friday Fun here at evbishop.com before? Here’s the nitty-gritty.

All you have to do is show up here on the first Friday of every month and follow the super easy directions, and you’ll be entered for a chance to win. At the end of each giveaway, the winner(s) will be chosen at random and contacted for his/her mailing address and the goodies will go in the post.

I’m looking forward to your comments and wish you a fabulous August!

*While on holidays this summer, I picked up a super fun little game called “Lit Chat – Conversation Starters About Books and Life” published by Book Riot. (If you’re in love with reading themed, bookish gifts, you will definitely want to visit their online shop!) Most of my 1st Friday Fun questions will be coming from there for the next foreseeable months, and since I know you guys are almost as book crazy as me, I thought I’d share the source, in case you want to grab it for yourself or your bookclub or whatever!

** FLASH SALE **

Happy Friday the 13th! Do I have a deal for you! (One that’s not scary or spooky at all, LOL.) I suspect (hope!) that most of you have read HOOKED, but if you haven’t, now’s the time. 😉

It’s a smoking deal: just .99 cents for one week only! (Would also make a fun “thinking of you” gift from Amazon for friends or family who love to read.)

What do readers think?

“Sam is a sassy, tough heroine. Charlie is a seriously hot and nice man. All the odds seemed stacked against them getting together, and yet, love will prevail! Even knowing that Sam and Charlie would probably get their HEA, I was swept up in the power of their story, swirled around in the current, even tossed and tumbled a few times under water – and I loved every minute of it!” – Angela, Amazon reviewer

“This book is well written, compelling and in many ways, thought provoking! I will be recommending it to my friends and family. I am also hoping that my book club will include both books in our list of books to chat about.” – Leanne Roberts, Amazon reviewer

“A classic romance to delight all fans of the genre, this book goes deeper in exploring the human condition. Ev Bishop does a fabulous job of raising the emotional stakes and the sexual tension without the explicit (and often clumsy) sex scenes so often found in romance today. Samantha, pregnant at 17, gave up her daughter in hopes of giving her a better life. Aisha, now also pregnant at 17 has lost her adoptive mother and wants to reconnect with her birth mother. Aisha’s adoptive father, Charles, feels Sam is trying to steal his daughter and when they meet accidentally at River’s Sigh B&B, sparks fly. Adding fuel to an already explosive situation is Aisha’s vehement opposition to any relationship between Sam and Charles and the undeniable chemistry between the two.This book will have you Hooked from the very beginning. This is definitely a must read.” – Margaret, Amazon reviewer

Get hooked on HOOKED today:

Google Play – Amazon iBooks KoboNook  

Wishing you lovely summer days and many, many, many book getaways,

😊 Ev