Do you believe in the magic of Christmas?

They say Christmas is the most magical time of the year, that miracles can happen on the day when we celebrate the birth of Jesus Christ. I don’t particularly believe in miracles, but there’s still some magic of the winter holidays left in my heart.

I loved Christmas when I was a child, even though my parents were not wealthy and we never had a pile of gifts under the tree. But we were better off than a lot of other people, and I’m grateful for that now.

As I became an adult, the practicalities and problems that come with being a grown-up took away a little of my holiday enthusiasm each year. Stretching the budget, organizing things, breaking my back in the kitchen… The real tree turned into a plastic one to avoid the hassle and the mess, buying gifts turned into a stressful process, even going shopping is less fun every year because of the growing lines and interminable city traffic.

However, this year I believe in the magic of Christmas more than I ever had. Why? Because my friends in the Authors’ Billboard practically put the most amazing present under my tree: a USA Today bestseller badge!

A little over a year ago, the seed of what seemed like a crazy dream took root in my mind: to become a USA Today bestselling author. Not only that, but I realized that if I made it, I would be the first Romanian in history to achieve this prestigious title. Since that moment, I worked relentlessly toward this goal, and I’m still amazed by how many incredible people I met on the way, people who joined me in my journey and fought hard to help me achieve my dream.

Together, we did it with the anthology Love, Christmas 2!

My story in this box set is a romantic comedy called Boyfriend Wanted for Christmas.

THE DESPERATE YET HUMOROUS QUEST OF AN AMERICAN BRIDGET JONES TO FIND A BOYFRIEND IN THE SEVEN DAYS SHE HAS LEFT UNTIL CHRISTMAS

Thirty-three-year-old librarian Andrea Sachse doesn’t have the time or skills to date. No man can ever live up to her dreamy book boyfriends, so why bother? But with her parents looking more desperate each time she shows up solo for their annual Christmas party, this year she’s determined to find herself a boyfriend by any means—fair or foul.

There are so many people I owe this accomplishment to, and who deserve a special THANK YOU:  Carmen, Mimi, my editor Sue, Jackie, all my wonderful co-authors of Love, Christmas 2 and of course, all of you, our dear readers and friends, who bought this box set.

The most meaningful THANK YOU goes to my husband, for being there for me, for believing in me, for offering moral and financial support, emergency hugs, pep talks, for playing housekeeper, tear-wiper, even chef when I was too exhausted, and never complaining when I worked twelve hours a day until 2 or 3 am, for keeping my spirits up with his endless supply of optimism, and for putting up with me – which is no easy job.

Each and every one of you who read this post, this victory is yours, as much – or even more – than it’s mine.  ♥ ♥ ♥

Now do you believe in the magic of Christmas? Here’s something that will make your holidays even more fun:  We’re looking for Santas and Reindeer! Visit our December Contest and YOU could win gift cards, paperback books, and book bundles. Click here to play! 

Wishing you the best holidays ever!

A Road Trip for Inspiration

This past weekend my husband and I took a fun roadtrip so I could get a first hand perspective of a town for an upcoming book that I am co-writing with another author (Love Inked, The Twisted Love Series). It was a spur of the moment decision to head up and check it out and one I am so glad that I made! 

Sunday morning, hubby and I jumped in my car and hit the PA Turnpike to go west and then north to the little town of Centralia. Now, it might sound that exciting to go visit a small town in the middle of no where, but this town has some serious history. If you search Centralia PA, you’ll see it listed as the Town that is No More. Google lists it as a Ghost Town.

Why is that? Well, it’s because Centralia was once a up and coming mining town, and in 1962 while burning some rubish at the landfill, they started a fire in a mining shaft below ground. Today, the fire still burns underground (and is expected to burn at least another 200 years) and the entire town has been evacuated (expect about 7 residences who refuse to leave). The history is quite fascinating, and my visit there was awesome!

The series that I’m writing with Amy Manemann is a Romantic Suspense/Police Procedural series, and while the majority of it takes place in Philly, Centralia is going to play a big part in the upcoming books. Love Inked, Book 3 in the series will introduce the town, and Book 4 (Title not announced yet) the two female detectives will visit.

Now what’s in Centralia? Not much. A bunch of streets that have no signs, but navigation will tell you what their names used to be. A lot of plots of land overgrown between the roads, broken cement stairs that used to lead to homes, and lots of graffiti! There are a few homes left, and a municipal building along with a church and two cemetaries.

What I also found there was a whole lot of inspriation for our series. As I looked around, I could picture where things would happen, and I felt like Kali (the character) was ready to take on the investigation!  That little creek in front of me here, well let’s just say that you might see that again on the pages of a book.

All in all, my hubby and I had a great time. Not only doing the reseach, but just spending the day with each other. I’m blessed that I have a husband who is so encouraging and willing to help me out! Now I can’t wait to figure out my next location so we can visit that one too!

If you want to know more about my trip and the Twisted Love Series, join the Twisted Love Series Addicts Group on Facebook, and check out the first two books, Love Lorn by Amy Manemann and Love Torn, by me. Those two books give the back story on the upcoming Book Love Inked that releases on January 3rd.

 

 

 

 

Stacy Eaton is a USA Today Best Selling author and began her writing career in October of 2010. Stacy took an early retirement from law enforcement after over fifteen years of service in 2016, with her last three years in investigations and crime scene investigation to write full time.

Stacy is very involved in Domestic Violence Awareness and served on the Board of Directors for her local Domestic Violence Center for three years.

Two Hearts Home For Christmas – What’s My Inspiration? Our thanks to everyone who made us a USA TODAY BESTSELLER #mgtab

Hi, I’m Tamara Ferguson, and my contribution to the

LOVE CHRISTMAS—MOVIES THAT YOU ANTHOLOGY is

Two Hearts Home For Christmas Book 9 in my series.

TWO HEARTS HOME FOR CHRISTMAS
(Two Hearts Wounded Warrior Romance Book 9)

At eighteen years old, both Nancy Caldwell and John Ehrlich are planning on enlisting in different branches of the military. After they were each stood up for the Christmas dance when their dates, formerly a couple, decided to get back together, Nancy and John have become good friends. Realizing there was something special developing between them, they say goodbye while making a somewhat serious commitment—they would meet at Dragonfly Pointe ten years later if they weren’t involved in another serious relationship.
Will a long ago promise of love bring these two lonely wounded warriors home for Christmas?

Although there are a lot of serious undertones in my wounded warrior stories, there is also a lot of humor. I know that in my life, laughter can sometimes be the only thing that keeps me going.

Here are a few behind the page facts about the way I write; this story in particular.

My covers inspire what i write. For this story, my heroine Nancy is actually named after my best friend in high school, who looks exactly like the girl on this cover! And so I named my hero John, who looks nothing like my hero in my story. I just didn’t want to leave him out, since he’s married to Nancy. 

Does my friend know I’ve named my character after her? NO. Mostly because I never have any time anymore to talk to people in real life, because the last few years, all I’ve been doing is WRITING! (well, promoting too.)

That is how my mind works. Because I am writing with the history of my friend in my thoughts, I begin my story during her high school years, And because I have a lot of resentment about being forced to move to a small town in Illinois (where no one was friendly) from the suburbs of Chicago (where i had lots of friends and was happy), I can relate to just about every character I write about. 

And just an fyi-the title Two Hearts Home For Christmas? I did name it after the movie I’ll Be Home For Christmas, but not for the well known film made in the 2000s, but for the movie made in the 1990’s, where two kids are trying to get their parents back together after a divorce.

In my story, my hero John has two younger twin sisters who love the girl he dated in high school (Nancy), and have been trying to get them back together ever since. 

But it’s been ten years. Nancy has become engaged, although she’s still active duty Army, and John has returned home without a leg, and a lot of serious medical issues relating to his missing leg, 

Will they get back together? You’ll just have to read

Two Hearts Home For Christmas!

Happy Holidays!! Tammy Amazon    Nook    iBooks    Kobo

Tamara Ferguson

Writing steamy yet sweet compassionate stories of fate that are wonderfully romantic, Tamara Ferguson is the multi-award winning, #1 international bestselling author of the Tales of the Dragonfly romance suspense series, the Kissed By Fate new adult romance series, the Two Hearts Wounded Warrior Romance series and the Daydreams and Dragonflies sweet romance series.

My favorite question: Where do you get the inspiration for your stories?

My husband would tell you that he’s the inspiration for everything I write. Perhaps there is a little bit of truth to that. The things I write about are often taken right out of the things I see around me. For example: The Butterfly MurdersI first got the idea for this when a story broke in my home town of Rochester, NY about funeral homes taking bones, replacing them with PVC piping, and selling the bone marrow. I thought, what if someone was murdering people who had received organ donation? I know, it sounds dark, and it is a little bit on the dark side, but this is really a romance. A second chance romance. One of my favorite tropes. It’s really about two people who for whatever reason, spent time a part, lived separate lives, and came back together to help solve a crime and save the hero’s young son. I just got chills!

I also tend to write about the places I’ve lived, or visited, that I have strong ties to and the biggest one is Lake George, NY. Do you every close your eyes and you think of your childhood, specific memories stick out? When I think of my summers spent in Lake George, I can see the clear crystal waters. Feel the chilly air in August against my skin. Smell the fire crackling while we roast marshmallows and tell ghost stories. And I remember the feeling of climbing on the back of a State Trooper’s bike at age 8 and going for a ride down to the country store for an ice cream. I can feel how the State Trooper Helicopter swooped down low over the lake when I was 10 and I saw the entire SCUBA team moon me! What a treat for a little girl, LO.

I wrote a 7 book series set in Lake George, NY: The New State Trooper Series. Every single book is based on a location that has very strong memories for me. The first book in the series I borrow from the servants house we rented and my best-friend’s home at the time. I write about a big white hotel (changed the name) in the middle of Lake George, and a pub that was in my backyard where I used to pick big, plump raspberries. Each book has slightly different location on the 32 mile lake, but each one holds something special in my heart.

 

But, I also get inspired by mine and other people’s emotions. Their strengths and weaknesses. Their greatest moments and those times in life that bring into a dark place. My contribution to Love, Christmas 2 came to me when I thought of my best girlfriend who lost her husband and everything she has done over the last four years to help her children cope with the loss of their father, something I also know a little about since my father passed away when I was 17. The premise is based on a Hallmark movie, but the emotions are raw.

It’s often said that writers bleed on the page. I believe that is true. A little piece of me, my life experiences, my emotions, my perception of my past and my dreams of the future, all end up in my stories.

Welcome to my World! I’m an Award-Winning and Bestselling Author of Romantic Suspense, Contemporary Romance, and Paranormal Romance. DARK WATER, book 2 in the NY STATE TROOPER series hit number 10 in Barnes and Nobel overall. THE BLIND DATE hit number 1 in the Contemporary Romance/Kindle Worlds List on Amazon. JANE DOE’S RETURN won both THE MOLLY and the BEACON before being published by the WILD ROSS PRESS.

I first started writing while carting my kids to one hockey rink after the other, averaging 170 games per year between 3 kids in 2 countries and 5 states. My first book, IN TWO WEEKS was originally published in 2007. In 2010 I helped form a publishing company (Cool Gus Publishing) with NY Times Bestselling Author Bob Mayer where I ran the technical side of the business through 2016.

I’m currently enjoying the next phase of my life…the empty NESTER! My husband and I spend our winters in Jupiter, Florida and our summers in Rochester, NY. We have three amazing children who have all gone off to carve out their places in the world, while I continue to craft stories that I hope will make you readers feel good and put a smile on your face.