Boxed Set News and Cover Reveal!

On July 17, Highland Healer is coming out in a boxed set with three other Scottish romances from the Wild Rose Press! You’ll get four great books at one great price!

A HIGHLANDER’S DESTINY

Strength, Love and Courage

This digital boxed edition contains 4 complete novels.

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Highland Healer

Willa Blair

He needs her for his clan. He wants her for himself. Can he have both?

Toran Lathan never expected to become Laird, and never expected to meet a woman like Aileanna Shaw. Her healing ability is just what his people need, but Toran cannot resist her beauty. Yet will loving him destroy her ability to heal?

Aileanna Shaw has a healing touch–and a special talent she must keep secret. Stolen from her home by a marauding army, she’s kidnapped again by the Highland Laird she heals. Is she a prize of war, or the prize of his heart?

While Toran battles the invading lowland army, he also battles his desire for Aileanna. And Aileanna must decide if she can trust her secrets to this fierce warrior who needs her talent, but wants her love.

Beyond a Highland Whisper

Maeve Greyson

The last time Latharn MacKay walked among his kinsman was in Scotland of 1410. Sensuous and charismatic, all the women wanted him, but none could capture his heart. Latharn’s charm became his curse when a dark sorceress didn’t take rejection well. She snared his soul into a crystal globe until the one woman destined to be his love whispered his release. Now all Latharn has to do is find her and guide her to him without speaking a word.

One of the youngest archeologists in St. Louis of 2010, Nessa credits one thing for this achievement: the recurring dream of a heart-stopping Highlander since the summer she turned eighteen years old. Little does she know, he’s not some fantasy cooked up by her subconscious. He’s a trapped soul determined for Nessa to end his six centuries in hell. Can love prevail over the dark magic of a woman scorned?

Into The Scottish Mist

Beth Anne Miller

Abby Sanders returns to her beloved Scotland after a long absence, seeking peace after a terrible tragedy. A chance detour reunites her with Ian Mackenzie, the love she left behind four years ago. Their attempt to rekindle their romance along the shore of Loch Ness is cut short when Abby vanishes.

After a desperate search for the woman he’s spent four years trying to forget, Ian is forced to believe the unbelievable: he must travel through the mists of time to find Abby. But finding her is just the beginning. Trapped four hundred years in the past, Abby and Ian must find a way to end a bitter clan feud or sacrifice their return to the present and their future together.

Immortal Justice

Faith V. Smith

Over a millennium ago, Highlander Darach MacRath was murdered. Resurrected by the Archangel Michael to fight demons as an Immortal Executioner, Darach now opposes all evil in the mortal world. His life is solitary—but when he rescues a young woman who not only sees demons but battles them herself, he is captivated by her courage and beauty.

Abigail Dupree is not looking for love. But when a tall, dark demon fighter with a sexy brogue intervenes in her hunt, she’s fascinated. She should run away—but then his gentle yet sizzling touch ensnares her heart.

When a demon from Darach’s past sets his sights on Abby, Darach will do anything to protect her—but for Abby, losing him would be worse than death. Together they must fight the demons of past and present, and the possibility that evil could destroy them both, before they find the gift of love.

Rating: Spicy
Page Count: 1362
Word Count: 361988

On sale from The Wild Rose Press.  Get your copy today!

And while you’re at it, check out the Scottish romance boxed set that came out last week:  A Highlander’s Legacy – Fiercely Loyal, Passionate and Powerful.

HIGHLAND SEER Wins RONE Awards Honorable Mention

What a lovely surprise! At the InD’Tale Magazine RONE Awards on Friday, 11 July, HIGHLAND SEER was awarded an Honorable Mention in the Historical Medieval category!

I’m thrilled for HIGHLAND SEER to get this recognition! If you haven’t read it yet, it’s available in ebook, print and audiobook formats from your favorite retailer!

Highland Seer Audiobook Release Day!

Today is the release day for Highland Seer (Highland Talents Book 2) on audiobook!  Yes, you have another Scottish romance, filled with those sexy rolling r’s that glide across your skin and make your ears happy!

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Donal MacNabb is loyal to his adopted Lathan clan, yet he resents being a pawn in their treaty negotiations with the struggling MacKyries. The MacKyrie clan needs his skills as an arms master, but its Laird is bartering for more than Donal is prepared to give.

Ellie MacKyrie knows the Lathan treaty will help protect her clan from the neighbor determined to seize her holdings any way he can—including forcing her into marriage. But she has another reason to want the Lathan alliance. She has Seen the stubborn Donal MacNabb reaching for her in her dreams.

While Donal fights to save a clan in trouble, his desire for the MacKyrie Seer wars with his obligation to his Laird. Before she is forced into a marriage that will destroy her clan, Ellie must find the heart behind Donal’s gruff exterior and convince him he is the man of her dreams.

Get your copy of this 2014 Readers Crown and RONE Award finalist and from Amazon, Tantor Media or audible.com today!

Narrated by Derek Perkins

Cover Reveal! Kissing the Highlander

I can now share with you the cover for Kissing the Highlander, the anthology I’m doing with best-selling authors Terry Spear, Eliza Knight, Vonda Sinclair and Victoria Roberts.

Kissing the Highlander will be out on Valentine’s Day 2015.  In the meantime, you can enjoy the cover!  We’ll post some hints now and again about the novellas it contains.  We’ll also have a Facebook group where you can keep up with developments.  Check back here for details!

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Isn’t it fabulous!  Designed by Vonda Sinclair, a wizard with cover art as well as a great author and fabulous person.

Worldwide Release Day for The Healer’s Gift!

Prepare to party!  Today is the Worldwide Release Day for

The Healer’s Gift (a Highland Talents Novella)!

It is, or soon will be, available at all your favorite retailers, including Amazon, Barnes & Noble, iBooks, KOBO, AllRomanceEBooks, and others. To celebrate, I’m doing a little party from 6-8pm CDT on Facebook, and you’re welcome to drop in, say hi and maybe even win something!  In fact, if you leave a comment here, when you join the party, you’ll get an extra chance at winning a prize.

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The MidSummer’s Dream Giveaway Winners!

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The Winners of the Midsummer’s Dream Giveaway have been announced.  Here’s the complete list.  Congratulations to everyone who participated, as well as the winners.  I hope you had fun!

1st Prize Winner-Grand Prize: Ipad Mini or Kindle Fire HDX and Scottish Highland Title
Terri Renfro

2nd Prize Winner -Kindle Paperwhite or Kobo GLO or NOOK Glowlight
Ashley Granger

3rd Prize Winner-Basket of signed books, Tea & Goodies
Kathy Isa Reader

4th Prize Winner-Audiobook Collection, includes works from Stephanie Laurens, Tanya Anne Crosby, Shelly Thacker, Jennifer Ashley, Kathryn Le Veque & Suzan Tisdale.
Yvonne Daniels

5th Prize Winner-Ebook from each of the participating authors.
Babette Jones

6th Prize Winners-5 winners will receive a $10 Gift Certificate from an ebook retailer of choice
Kimberly Luke Scherer
Sara Robinson
Susie Frank Horadan
Asra Matchett
Thelma Cubic

Congratulations to the winners and all the participants from all fourteen of the Midsummer’s Dream Giveaway Authors!

Giveaway

 

What Do You Call 100 Men in Kilts?

What do you call a hundred men in kilts?  A Pinehurst Scottish Bagpipe Tattoo!  Four groups of pipers of both genders from all over North Carolina, along with drummers, dancers, and a very Scottish drum major, brought a bit of the Highlands to the Sandhills last week to celebrate Pinehurst #2 hosting both the men’s and women’s golf US Opens.

They marched into the Pinehurst village green from different directions to the stirring sound of Scotland the Brave, which brought everyone to their feet. By the time the last notes of Amazing Grace died away at the end of the program, there wasn’t a dry eye to be seen.

RomCon 2014 Readers’ Crown Finalists!

8048ea2d28f90da4fa4ded1f585d5778-1.image.383x550 36841b084a7ba0f35d0f751223ddf148.image.383x550Two of my books, Highland Healer and Highland Seer are 2014 RomCon Readers’ Crown finalists in the Medieval category!  If you don’t have them already, here are two ways to get them: 

1. Place a Bid in Brenda Novak’s auction for Diabetes Research for a signed set of my books, including Highland Healer, 2014 RomCon Readers’ Crown Historical Finalist and Highland Seer, 2014 RomCon Readers’ Crown and InD’Tale Magazine RONEAward finalist (Historical Medieval), plus a signed copy of my latest release, The Healer’s Gift (a Highland Talents novella).  If you place the winning bid, you’ll not only get a great prize, but you’ll have the satisfaction of helping a worthy cause.  

2. Sign up for my newsletter for a chance to win a signed set of my books. And other prizes.  And goodies.  For instance, my May newsletter, coming out late this month, will include a never before seen excerpt from Highland Troth (Highland Talents Book 3) — exclusive for my newsletter subscribers!

Don’t wait another minute.  Place your bid and sign up now for your chances to win.  

CONTEST!

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Would you like to win a signed copy of my new novella, The Healer’s Gift?  

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Then click HERE to enter my Goodreads Giveaway.  

I’ve got four print copies up for grabs (to US and Canada).  

Winners will be notified by Goodreads after the 24 May closing date for the contest. 

Good luck!

Newsletter subscribers, I’ll have another opportunity for you to win my books in my MAY Newsletter. What?  You’re not on my mailing list?  See that nice little newsletter envelope, surrounded by a lovely shade of blue, at the top of the page on the right?  Click there, or HERE, to subscribe. You don’t want to miss out on all the fun, now do you?

S is for Street Team

A2Z-BADGE-0002014-small_zps8300775cThis month, as I did last year, I’m participating in the AtoZ Blogging Challenge. The first post is A, the next is B and so on every day this month, except Sundays. Last year, my theme was Scotland. This year, my theme is The Writing Life. Check back here every day this month to follow along and find out what I’ve learned in the last year. For instance:

Big-Army-Street-Team-ClickS is for Street Team.  A street team can be many things, but most simply, it’s a group of readers – fans and friends – who love your books so much that they want to help you get the word out.  

On the plus side, they network, tell their friends, leave bookmarks at libraries and bookstores, flood Twitter with hashtags related to your writing, help publicize book launches, etc., etc., etc.  You give them challenges and reward them with incentives such as books, t-shirts, or deleted scenes that no one else gets to see.  

A street team, like any group of special friends, can take a lot of time to set up and run. If you’re very lucky, one or two members will be so enthusiastic, they’ll wind up running the team for you.  Planning ahead and creating incentives and swag are critical to having rewards in place for your team.  And you need rules – what is acceptable and what is not for interaction with you, among team members, and with the public.  

Some authors disband their street team and then rebuild it in time for each new book release.  Others keep the same team for as long as any member wants to belong and be active.  How you run yours is up to you.  But you must weigh the pros and cons before you set up a street team and decide if one is right for you.

R is for Research

A2Z-BADGE-0002014-small_zps8300775cThis month, as I did last year, I’m participating in the AtoZ Blogging Challenge. The first post is A, the next is B and so on every day this month, except Sundays. Last year, my theme was Scotland. This year, my theme is The Writing Life. Check back here every day this month to follow along and find out what I’ve learned in the last year. For instance:

R is for Research. If you write in almost any genre, but especially if you write historical, research is a fact of your writing life.  

earth_and_magnify_glassI used to dread it, but I’ve come to enjoy following virtual rabbit trails around the internet as one interesting fact or tidbit leads to another.  You never know where your next story idea will come from.  Sometimes it comes from something obscure you find while looking for something else. 

So enjoy the time you spend on research.  You never know where it will lead.

 

 

 

Check out the others participating in this month’s A to Z Challenge!

Not Exactly Easter Eggs, But…

We interrupt the A to Z Blog Tour to bring you Happy Easter wishes!  And just look what the Easter Bunny brought to my house this weekend!

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I think there’s a Goodreads Giveaway in our future!

Q is for Quotidian

A2Z-BADGE-0002014-small_zps8300775cThis month, as I did last year, I’m participating in the AtoZ Blogging Challenge. The first post is A, the next is B and so on every day this month, except Sundays. Last year, my theme was Scotland. This year, my theme is The Writing Life. Check back here every day this month to follow along and find out what I’ve learned in the last year. For instance:

20090226-calendarQ is for Quotidian.  There’s a word that doesn’t get used much these days.  It means recurring daily, which is what you should be doing as an author.  Writing, recurring daily.  

It’s a goal, one I admit I don’t achieve, either.  But it’s always in the back of my mind.  On days that I don’t write, I feel like I’ve wasted time that could have been used to accomplish something — word count, revisions, editing, any part of the process that leads to a finished, publish-ready book.  Yeah, I’ve got it bad.  I’ll bet you do, too.  

So remember this word:  quotidian.  It’s a good goal.

 

Check out the other authors doing the A to Z Challenge this month!

P is for Piracy

A2Z-BADGE-0002014-small_zps8300775cThis month, as I did last year, I’m participating in the AtoZ Blogging Challenge. The first post is A, the next is B and so on every day this month, except Sundays. Last year, my theme was Scotland. This year, my theme is The Writing Life. Check back here every day this month to follow along and find out what I’ve learned in the last year. For instance:

P is for Piracy.  There are few topics guaranteed to rile up a group of authors as much as this one.  Piracy is the illegal, unauthorized reproduction of an author’s work, usually for sale by the pirate, with none of the proceeds going to the author or legitimate publisher.  Piracy is so rampant, most publishers and authors cannot or will not do anything about it.

Let’s be clear.  It’s stealing.

Whether it’s a book, or an episode of a television show (an episode of Game of Thrones just broke the series’s own piracy record), movie or music, if it wasn’t bought from a legitimate source, it was stolen.  And no, I’m not talking about loaning a paperback copy of your favorite book to a friend.  I’m talking about large-scale, deliberate attempts to make money from someone else’s hard work, sweat, and probably even tears by putting a digital copy of their work up on an unauthorized website and selling it.  Or even giving it away.  Without the author’s or publisher’s permission, their copyright is violated and — again — it’s theft.

pirate_flag_skull_bones_patchWhy aren’t these pirates ashamed?  Turns out most are international, are in it for a quick buck or ruble or whatever, don’t recognize copyright laws and don’t give a rat’s a–…well, you get my drift. These are not nice people.

There are things that an author or publisher can do – send cease and desist form letters, notify the site host, warn their readers to avoid pirate sites and so forth.  But they’re only temporary solutions.  Take down one site and another pops up right behind it.

Some authors take the philosophical stance that people who get books from pirates wouldn’t have paid for them anyway.  And once read, the book might intrigue them enough to buy more of the author’s work through legitimate channels.  That might be true for some fraction of books acquired at a pirate site.  It might also be true that more of the author’s books will be pirated and those readers will just keep looking for the pirated copies that are cheap or free.

My bottom line is this: if you see my books on a pirate site — and you will — don’t download them.  It’s stealing.

 

Check out the other authors doing the A to Z Challenge this month!

 

O is for Opportunity

A2Z-BADGE-0002014-small_zps8300775cThis month, as I did last year, I’m participating in the AtoZ Blogging Challenge. The first post is A, the next is B and so on every day this month, except Sundays. Last year, my theme was Scotland. This year, my theme is The Writing Life. Check back here every day this month to follow along and find out what I’ve learned in the last year. For instance:

O is for Opportunity. As with any other profession, those who work hard prepare to take advantage of opportunities that come their way.  For authors, that means writing, writing, writing.  But it takes a lot more than writing to be a successful author these days.  For example:

Build a brand by having a website and being active on social media.

Practice your 20-second elevator speech (your bio, book description, whatever you need) until you can recite it in your sleep.

Rehearse your agent and editor pitch until you’re sure they’ll be so impressed, they’ll just have to buy your book.

Attend conferences and network with other authors.

Make sure your book is as close to perfectly edited and formatted as you can make it before it’s published.

Then, when the chance to pitch your book, meet an author you love to read, or collaborate with other authors on a promotion project comes along, you’ll be ready. 

Check out the other authors doing the A to Z Challenge this month!

N is for Newsletter

A2Z-BADGE-0002014-small_zps8300775cThis month, as I did last year, I’m participating in the AtoZ Blogging Challenge. The first post is A, the next is B and so on every day this month, except Sundays. Last year, my theme was Scotland. This year, my theme is The Writing Life. Check back here every day this month to follow along and find out what I’ve learned in the last year. For instance:

newsletterN is for Newsletter.  Yes, I have one.  I’d love for you to join my newsletter mailing list.  You’ll get first crack at contests, exclusive content, and cool developments I haven’t shared anywhere else.  I only publish once a month, so your inbox won’t be inundated – at least not by me.  But you will be in the know, which is a great place to be.  If you haven’t already clicked one of the links above, click here!

Why do authors write newsletters?  For a variety of reasons, but here are a few:

A newsletter lets us share exclusive content with readers who really want to know about us and our books.

A newsletter lets us reward readers who really want to know about us and our books with exclusive contests, book excerpts, previews, and news before anyone else gets access to them.

A newsletter mailing list tells us who our most devoted fans are – the people who love our books and who help us get the word out when we have a new release or an exciting development to share.

If that sounds like fun to you, join my newsletter mailing list!

To see who else is Blogging from A to Z this month, click here.

M is for Making It Up

A2Z-BADGE-0002014-small_zps8300775cThis month, as I did last year, I’m participating in the AtoZ Blogging Challenge. The first post is A, the next is B and so on every day this month, except Sundays. Last year, my theme was Scotland. This year, my theme is The Writing Life. Check back here every day this month to follow along and find out what I’ve learned in the last year. For instance:

M is for Making It Up.  We writers do a lot of that.  Some more, some less, depending on the genre we write in, and how historically or factually accurate we want a story to be.  Mystery, crime fiction, police procedural and courtroom drama writers spend hours on research because some readers love to catch an author in a mistake.   It’s part of the fun of reading those books.  I imagine the same is true for Regency historicals that are filled with period details of costume, customs and furnishings.  

Scottish historical writers have more freedom to incorporate fantasy elements, and to forego real locations in favor of places and events they create.  Irish historical romances go even further, as most of them incorporate some form of the Fae of Irish myth and legend.question-mark-112390_640

No matter what you write, you depend on your imagination.  But as Tom Clancy famously said, unlike real life, fiction has to make sense.  Your story has to have some logic to it, even if it’s only its own internal logic.  Worldbuilding is a science as well as an art.  What’s the geography?  Who are the people?  What are their customs?  Religion?  Politics?  You may not incorporate all of those elements in your story, but you’ll think about them as you make up the details of your world, if you want the story to make sense to you and your readers.

To find other authors participating in the AtoZ Blogging Challenge, click here!

J is for Judging

A2Z-BADGE-0002014-small_zps8300775cThis month, as I did last year, I’m participating in the AtoZ Blogging Challenge. The first post is A, the next is B and so on every day this month, except Sundays. Last year, my theme was Scotland. This year, my theme is The Writing Life. Check back here every day this month to follow along and find out what I’ve learned in the last year. For instance:

J is for judging.  Whether you participate in a critique partnership or critique group, write reviews, or judge contests, you’re called upon to judge the work of other authors.  Yes, it’s tough enough deciding if your own writing is good, bad or indifferent.  But we writers depend on honest feedback from our peers to help us sort through plot problems, identify word repetition and grammar mistakes, and on the plus side, to gain attention from agents, editors and readers.  

The old adage “If you can’t say anything nice, don’t say anything” doesn’t serve us well when we’re called upon to help another author improve their writing.  Nor is it fair to anyone in a contest to give only positive feedback. Judging implies recognizing both positive and negative aspects of a work. But there’s no need to be mean, either.  Honesty can be couched in kind words, helpful suggestions, and critical feedback that leaves room for the other person to grow as an author while protecting their ego.  images

Judging another’s work is fun when they’ve done a great job, you enjoy their story, and you can easily give them positive reinforcement.  Most of us don’t enjoy the flip side of that coin, when we could not finish the book, when there are so many errors that it looks like we bled all over the page with our red pen, or when we have to score a contest entry so low that we know the entry has no chance of advancing.  But if we’re determined to help our fellow authors ensure that manuscripts are truly ready to be published, then we have no choice.  

 

Have you Voted for HIGHLAND SEER Yet?

HIGHLAND SEER is a nominee for InD’Tale Magazine’s 2014 RONE Award in the Historical: Medieval category.  You can help it become a finalist!  

Vote this week (between 24-30 March 2014) in the Romance, Historical: Medieval category  Every vote counts!  

RONE Award Final

You must be registered to vote online.  BUT: If you don’t want to sign in, you can vote by email.  Please include Genre (Historical: Medieval), book (HIGHLAND SEER) and author (Willa Blair) and send your vote to: anasmith@indtale.com

Thank you for supporting HIGHLAND SEER! 

Help! Please Vote!

HIGHLAND SEER is a nominee for InD’Tale Magazine’s 2014 RONE Award in the Historical: Medieval category.  You can help it become a finalist!  

Vote this week (between 24-30 March 2014) in the Romance, Historical: Medieval category 

VOTEToday

You must be registered to vote online.  BUT: If you don’t want to sign in, you can vote by email.  Please include Genre (Historical: Medieval), book (HIGHLAND SEER) and author (Willa Blair) and send your vote to: anasmith@indtale.com

Thank you for supporting HIGHLAND SEER and me!