Friday, July 26, 2013

Funny Friday Photos

Hello and Happy Friday! 

I have to remind you that The Blogger Book Fair and Sizzling Summer Giveaways are almost over, so head over to either site today and register for the various giveaways before it's too late! Both events have been so much fun, and I feel like I've made some new friends, so that makes it even better! Also, Jessica Chiles at Such a Novel Idea wrote the best review for Finding Meara - not just that it was complimentary, but it's a really fun review. It has some cute graphics, even. Click here if you want to see it.

This week has been very odd for me. I did get some work done on world-building of the Realm for Adven 2. As I mind-mapped the Realm, I had all kinds of interesting ideas for scenes or future stories. It was definitely worth the time I spent on it. Now that I'm done, though, I can't decide what to do next. I think I need to just start writing again. Especially if I'm going to meet my deadline.

A quick "thanks" to all of you who commented last week. Somehow the week passed before I got back to respond. The story of my life, lately. 

Last week's winner for funniest photo was:

And now the new photos!

It's sooo FLUFFY!

Bask in the sun and you, too, can look this cute.

It must be the Star Trek Movie I recently watched, but all I see is a Vulcan-cat Mind Meld.

And our pun...

I love Shaq. Isn't he in the Gold Bond commercial?

My favorite? I'll go with the Vulcan-Cat.

Did you have a favorite this time?

Thursday, July 25, 2013

Blogger Book Fair Guest Zrinka Jelic

Hello Blogger Book Fair hoppers
I’m very delighted to meet you. My name is Zrinka Jelic and I’m author of three published books, Bonded by Crimson, a paranormal romance, and Treasured Chest, a historical romance. Plus my work appears in an anthology titled Angles Cried dedicated to tiny victims of unimaginable and senseless violence of Sandy Hook School.
Today I’d like to talk about my newest release, a time travel romance titled “Love Remains”. It was published by Crimson Romance on July 15th.
It is dedicated to all women, but especially working kind. It takes a lot of skill and energy to juggle career and family, and to keep going day in and day out. When kids are sick and we have to stay at home with our little ones, we face the employer’s scrutiny and in some cases even losing jobs. The treatment of working mothers in the corporations got me thinking and I’ve decided to show my findings (at least the way I was treated when faced with the issue) through my writing. And since I am a romance writer, what best way to do it than through romance. Of course, being of Croatian descent, I have to throw something Croatian in the mix. Would you sacrifice your family for the sake of your career? Is it OK for corporations to dispose of women who put their families before their jobs? Is there a golden middle?
I hope you’ll find “Love Remains” a thrilling read as I found it when I wrote it.

Here’s the book’s blurb
Olivia Owen, a busy, single, high-functioning, corporate executive officer, is not afraid to die a spinster for the sake of her career. But in an alternate reality world, bridged by the angel of her Down’s syndrome sister, she meets Tom Medar, a dedicated, Croatian defense attorney who dreams of the right woman, but never has time to find her. Together they foil an adulterous murder plot while discovering there’s room for love and family in their busy lives—but not before they are separated again.
When they awaken from their alternate world, will they be able to cross countries to find each other again?
Love Remains is now available on Amazon
Also, there’s a little giveaway on my blog and since I’m in Canada I’ll have to make it digital. So a copy of Love Remains for your e-reader and $5.00 Amazon gift card. Just drop by my blog Hello Romance and leave me a comment, join my blog or like my Facebook page.
And a bit about me

Zrinka Jelic lives in Ontario, Canada, with her husband and two children. A member of the Romance Writers of America and its chapter Fantasy Futuristic &Paranormal, as well as Savvy Authors, she writes contemporary fiction—which leans toward the paranormal—and adds a pinch of history. Her characters come from all walks of life, and although she prefers red, romance comes in many colors. Given Jelic’s love for her native Croatia and the Adriatic Sea, her characters usually find themselves dealing with a fair amount of sunshine, but that’s about the only break they get. “Alas,” Jelic says, with a grin. “Some rain must fall in everyone’s life.”

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Blogger Book Fair Guest Penelope Reece

Phantasma by Penelope Reece

Good school, nice friends, and a loving family. Alphie Brewster's life seems perfect except for one growing problem. She’s plagued with vivid nightmares, and is haunted by a forgotten past. And it's only getting worse.

The day she finds a mysterious necklace, Alphie wakes to see a ghostly figure leaning over her bed. Now she's got an even greater problem. A six foot four inch tall eccentric spook, named Noer, who has to possess her in order to stay in this world. He fills her with fire while slowly draining her energy as if she were a Duracell Battery.

Now her problems only seem to be escalating. The more she learns about Noer, the more she starts to remember her childhood. One that should have stayed buried and could very well tear her apart.


"Let this be a dream!" My mind screamed. "Let me wake up!"

I chanted the words in my mind, but I knew I wasn’t sleeping. The nightmare was very much real. My eyes and nose were all too aware of this fact. My body knew too, that’s why it was flat lining.
Next to me, the figure continued to breathe, his rancid breath caressing my ear while the smell burned a fiery path through my nostrils. Finally, I couldn’t take it any longer, and slowly – oh so painfully slow – I turned my head to look upon the face of, what I was sure was, a nightmare made flesh."

If you'd like to grab a copy of Phantasma for .99, now is the time to do it! Follow the Smashwords link below to access the special for only Blogger Book Fair participants!

Promotional price: $0.99

Coupon Code: WT44L

Expires: July 28, 2013 

Sing for Me is the second title Penelope is sharing with us today!

CHLOE HASKELL, a university student and runaway diva, is determined to never sing again. After escaping a life in the spot light, she wants only to have a normal life. But when an old flame comes to town, Chloe must decide if she’s willing to forget the past in order to fall in love with the man who broke her heart.

RHYS RYTHER, a Broadway composer, has been hired as a substitute professor at the university. There, he’s surprised to learn that his ex girlfriend, the girl he left without an explanation, is a student at the same university. What's even more surprising is that he still has feelings her.

When Chloe unintentionally gets cast in the school’s production of The Phantom of the Opera, unexplained events start to happen. She sees shadows everywhere. A ghost haunts her dreams. And someone is watching her. But is it all in her mind or has a dead man come back to claim her?

As Chloe and Rhys get closer, he learns that she’s been keeping a secret. It’s a secret so dark that could very well tear them apart. And when the impossible happens, can Rhys overcome Chloe’s dark past in order to save her from an even darker future?

Author Bio

Penelope Reece, Penn for short (b. 1984), is an author living in Central Indiana with her husband of two years and her tiny Pomeranian, Kodi.

She graduated from Indiana University in 2008 with a bachelor's degree in English. She then went on to spend nearly three years in South Korea where she taught English in a private academy. It was here that she met and married her husband in June of 2010.

They recently moved back to the States in March of 2012.

Penelope's been writing ever since her nerdy high school days where her joys were limited to marching band and day dreaming.

Her other joys include reading, crocheting, snuggling her little Kodi-man, and watching comedic TV shows such as Parks, and the IT Crowd. She also enjoys watching Korean dramas, listening to her husband sing. As well as being hyper and annoying her husband as much as she can.

Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Blogger Book Fair Guest Kirstin Pulioff

The Escape of Princess Madeline by Kirstin Pulioff

The Kingdom of Soron is known for many things, its rolling landscape, haunting history, fiery sunsets, and its beautiful princess. Princess Madeline woke on her sixteenth birthday to realize that her future had been planned out, a life full of privilege, royalty, and boredom... a life with a husband and knight champion that she did not choose. Using her charm, strength and stubbornness, she defies the King at every turn, determined to keep her freedom on her terms.

Freedom quickly turns to disaster as she finds herself seized by a group of wandering bandits. With the kingdom in turmoil over her capture; her Knight Champion eager to prove himself, a group of dedicated suitors determined to win her hand, and a group of exiled wizards join forces in the hunt to rescue her. Follow Princess Madeline in this adventure full of twists and turns as she tries to find her freedom and answers to her questions about life and love.

The Battle for Princess Madeline by Kirstin Pulioff

The Kingdom of Soron bustled with activity as preparations for the Fall Festival began. Lively merchants, hardworking farmers, and musicians eagerly awaited this event of harvest and joy. This year’s festival was even more important, as they celebrated Princess Madeline’s betrothal to her knight champion, Daniel.

Celebration quickly turns to disaster as Prince Paulsen returns with curious demands, either Princess Madeline will be his, or no ones. Rejection turns to obsession and battle is declared.

In a tense struggle to decide her future, Princess Madeline must choose where to put her trust… in the king’s tried and true plan, the wizard’s cryptic messages and maps, or her own sense of bravery. Follow Princess Madeline on this adventure as she battles evil in an attempt to create a future of love and magic.

We're lucky today because Princess Madeline answered some questions for us, so we could get to know her and her world a little better. Thank you, Princess, for agreeing to be interviewed on Motivation for Creation. The first question is, if you had a free day with no responsibilities and your only mission was to enjoy yourself, what would you do?

Oh, what I would give for a day off with no responsibilities. Life as a princess isn’t what you imagine it to be. My father, King Theodore, requires a lot from me and my brother. Duty, duty, duty, it is all he talks about and what he expects. All I have ever wanted is to be free, to have an adventure. If I had a day to myself, I would probably go on a walk through the Great Forest, shop at the local merchants, and enjoy a day without someone drilling me on the responsibilities of being a princess.

What’s your idea of a good marriage? Do you think that’ll happen in your life?

My idea of a good marriage is one that is filled with love. I would love to get married one day, when I am ready, but I don’t really have the choice… In my case, as the princess, my father will choose. There are lots of ceremonies involved in the process. First comes the bethrothal ball, the chance of meeting all the eligible princes and choosing between them. Afterwards, my father will hold a tournament to find my knight champion. Once I leave the kingdom, I will have my personal night to look after me and my needs in the new territory.

If you could spend the day with someone you admire (living or dead or imaginary), who would you pick?
That it easy. I would spend it with my mother. She died when my brother and I were born. I’ve heard that I am a lot like her, but I don’t know. It would be a dream come true to see her.

What’s the worst thing that’s happened in your life? What did you learn from it?
Worst thing that has happened to me… that is a good question. I suppose it would be being thrown from my horse at 5. My father had given me the most wonderful gift for my birthday, a new pony. I named her princess… on our first ride out, ‘Princess’ tossed me, breaking my arm. After that, my father got rid of the horse, my riding lessons, and my fun. I learned that my father overreacts! Ha

Tell me about your best friend.

My best friend is Sophia. She has been my friend since we were babies- sharing stories in the nursery, games and adventures as kids, secret handshakes. Lately it seems all we share is my brother. They have been spending way too much time together if you ask me. I don’t have a lot of friends though, and she has been there for me.

How do you feel about your life right now? What, if anything, would you like to change?

Life is good. I have my sixteenth birthday coming up, and that should be fun. The kingdom has been busy planning a ball, and that should be fun. I don’t get much adventure, so I am looking forward to that. I really hope something happens soon. I don’t know what, but I am dreaming of something more…

If you'd like to read all about the Princesses adventures, they are available on 

Or you could buy one and try to win the other with this fabulous giveaway!

Kirstin Pulioff is a storyteller at heart. Born and raised in Southern California, she moved to the Pacific Northwest to follow her dreams and graduated from Oregon State University (Go Beavs!) with a degree in Forest Management. Happily married and a mother of two, she lives in Oregon, and enjoys being a stay at home mom. When she's not writing, she is busy with her kids, church and the family business.

I love to hear from my readers and fans. Please connect with me on my other sites:

Monday, July 22, 2013

Blogger Book Fair Guest Rebecca Hamilton

The Forever Girl (Forever Girl Series #1)
HarperCollins: "It’s rare to see such natural flow and tempo from a debut author."
Sophia's family has skeletons, but they aren't in their graves. At twenty-two, practicing Wiccan Sophia Parsons is scratching out a living waiting tables in her Rocky Mountain hometown, a pariah after a string of unsolved murders with only one thing in common: her. Sophia can imagine lots of ways to improve her life, but she'd settle for just getting rid of the buzzing noise in her head. When the spell she casts goes wrong, the static turns into voices. Her personal demons get company, and the newcomers are dangerous. One of them is a man named Charles, who Sophia falls for despite her better judgment. He has connections that might help her unveil the mystery surrounding her ancestor's hanging, but she gets more than she bargains for when she finally decides to trust him. Survival in his world, she learns, means not asking questions and staying out of the immortal council's way. It's a line she crossed long ago. If Sophia wants to survive the council and save the people she loves, she must accept who she is, perform dark magic, and fight to the death for her freedom.
The Forever Girl is a full-length Paranormal Fantasy novel that will appeal to lovers of paranormal romance, urban fantasy, witches, vampire fiction, ghost stories, paranormal mystery, and paranormal horror.

Thursday, July 18, 2013

Funny Friday Photos and a Sweet Award

Happy Friday! I think I need to reacquaint myself with you all! Between moving my parents to Nebraska and attending the Eric Jensen conference "Teaching with Poverty in Mind," I totally got all blogging/writing discombobulated. I missed Friday Photos last week because I was marooned in Dallas, Texas, after my flight on Thursday was cancelled. My bags made it to Denver on Thursday, but I didn't! That put me behind on everything, including picking my children up from my parents in Nebraska, and so I missed the first installment of "Something Bizarre Happened." I even had a great story from being marooned in Dallas.

All water under the bridge now, right? While I was taking my forced break, my wonderful writing friend, Melanie Marttila, bestowed a new blog award upon Motivation for Creation! Here it is!

The Super Sweet Blogging Award!
There are some rules, which include answering some sweet questions, but I promise I'll be brief, so we can get to the photos. Or, if you want, skip this part and head right to the photos below!

The rules:
  • Thank the person who nominated me.
  • Answer five Super Sweet questions.
  • Include the award in my post. (check!)
  • Nominate a baker's dozen of deserving bloggers. (gulp.)
  • Notify my nominees on their blogs.

The Thanks:

Thank you, Melanie, for the fabulous new award! I love blog awards!

The questions:

Cookies or cake?

Both. I eat cookies more because they're easier to make, and don't spoil as fast, but I love both.

Chocolate or vanilla?

Um, vanilla, I think. I choose plain vanilla ice cream and vanilla cake over chocolate ice cream or cake. However, I love chocolate candy bars, pudding, pie, etc... So, I guess maybe both, again?

Favourite sweet treat?

Chocolate chip cookies - from dough to cookie. And I usually eat more dough than cookies.

When do you crave sweet things the most?

All the time. I have a bad habit.

Super sweet nickname?

My husband and I call each other sweetie. :)

Nominations: I don't have thirteen bloggers to nominate, so I'll just come up with as many as I can think of:

Cindy Keen Reynders, David Walker, Denise Wilson Falvo, Lexa Cain, Kelley Lynn, Suzi Weiland Retzlaff, Nicole Bates, Stacy Stenberg Jensen, Mike Schulenberg, Joe H. (Cranky), Fel Wetzig. (I got eleven! If I'm forgetting someone, I'm so sorry.)

You are all so sweet and dear to me. You have stuck around and/or been helpful and supportive. Thank you and enjoy the award, if you want to accept it.

And now to Friday Photos!

This is the pun of the day, but I really think it gets the best costume for a horse award.

My favorite this week is the Eleplant. I just relate to the poor little thing. I'm always doing things like that. But Catnip totally cracks me up, too.

What is your favorite?

Tuesday, July 09, 2013

Creature Feature: Jackalope

For this week's Creature Feature, I thought it might be good to start with some local lore. Growing up, we all knew about the Jackalope. It's said to be a cross between a jackrabbit and an antelope, which means it looks like a rabbit with antlers.

This Jackalope obviously has deer antlers. There is another species that has antelope antlers, but I couldn't find a photo. 

Interestingly, stories of horned rabbits extend as far back in time to 17th century Europe, and possibly even further than that.

Local lore states that, while mostly extinct worldwide, a small pocket of Jackalope live in the Western United States. I grew up thinking they were only from Wyoming.

Jackalopes are said to sing harmony with cowboys in a lovely tenor voice, move at speeds near 90 mph, and sleep belly up. If you are able to milk a Jackalope while it is sleeping, the milk has medicinal properties. However, Jackalopes are aggressive and will fiercely attack with its antlers, consequently earning the name "warrior rabbit."

The origins of the Jackalope are varied, but there is a virus, Shopes pappiloma, that causes growths on rabbits which resemble (loosely) horns. The poor bunnies looks so sad I didn't want the picture here, but if you are interested in seeing what the virus looks like, here is a link. 

Have you heard of Jackalope before?
Do you have Jackalope where you live?

Friday, July 05, 2013

Funny Friday Photos

Happy Friday! How was your week? I have no idea how mine was, because I'm writing this on Tuesday and scheduling it. I am helping my parents move and will be getting back home as you read this! I'm going to believe it's all going to go well, though.

Last weeks winner for funniest photo was:

And here are this week's photos:

Me in the morning.

Me pre-coffee.

Me post-coffee.

Me post-work.

Me... no, just joking. I've never used drugs, but this is the poster goat for what drugs will do to a person.

It's actually a vampire guinea pig.

My favorite for the week is the goat. I actually think it's kinda cute. In a backwoods, in-bred sort of way.

Which is your favorite?

Tuesday, July 02, 2013

Theme Park: Woman Power

Photo Courtesy
The first theme I'm going to tackle on the very first Theme Park is that of strong women. It shouldn't have surprised me that the female characters in Finding Meara are plucky and don't let others define who they are. Most of the women in my family are very outspoken and stand tall in the face of adversity. One of my favorite role-models of woman power in my family is my maternal great-grandmother, Irene.
As a child, my mother, sister and I would visit my great-grandma Irene on her ranch near Mule Creek Junction, Wyoming. By that time, Grandma Irene was in her 80's. She was a plump old lady with salt-and-pepper grey hair, some soft-looking jowels, and a twinkle in her eyes.
Scrubby plains surrounded the four room house in which she lived in by herself, her son living in a separate house next door. My sister and I enjoyed winding our way through the weathered red barns which once sheltered cattle and sheep, or hiking to the buttes which towered a significant distance away.
Grandma had been born in the late nineteenth century, a time which expected women to get married and have children – end of story. Grandma didn't pay attention to the times, though, and decided to write her own story. Following secondary school, she attended college to become a teacher. She graduated and taught in Dewey, South Dakorta, where she met the cowboy destined to become my great-grandfather, but she wasn't ready to settle down yet.
From 1919 to 1920, she and her sister each homesteaded plots near the Cheyenne River in Wyoming, while living together in a small cabin. Water was scarce. Grandma and Aunt Helen hauled water to the house to wash laundry on washboards. They cooked on wooden stoves. Horses were their only transportation. It was hard living, but Grandma proved the land (followed the rules to make it hers) all while teaching at a nearby school. She said you had to be determined to be successful.

My great-grandfather Mose homesteaded right next to Grandma Irene. Finally, in June of 1920, he convinced Grandma that they should marry, and they combined their homesteads.

Even after marriage, Grandma continued to teach for a while. She worked the ranch with Grandpa. She had three children, and kept the house. She canned the family’s food, tended the garden, sewed most of the clothing they wore, weeded the corn, and sent milk and eggs to town with the mailman to get credit for groceries. She and my grandfather were married for over fifty years before Grandpa died. They treated each other with respect, and provided love, guidance and a safe place for my mother and her siblings as they grew up.

I always enjoy telling people my Grandmother was a homesteader. While I'm sure she wasn't the only woman to do so, they always act surprised at the revelation. The best thing about Grandma Irene, though, is that she taught those around her about hard work, determination, love and family. She was the embodiment of a strong woman at a time when women weren't expected to be strong.


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