The Beauty of … A Personal Retreat

If you’re like most of us, you spend much of your time caring for others. Driving the kids to and from school, cooking, cleaning, the list is endless.

Many times, I feel overwhelmed, and a quiet retreat may be just the ticket for feeling rejuvenated.

You might think that you can’t possibly abandon your daily responsibilities. However, an overnight stay at your local hotel, AirBnB, or a cottage at the beach—somewhere you’re sure to get a good night’s sleep—isn’t an overly long time to be away.

The benefits of allowing yourself the time for new experiences and fresh starts cannot be overrated, because self-care is important for our well-being and overall health.

So, as we begin the summer season, carve out time for yourself. Don’t let the basics of every life get in the way.

Have you ever planned a quiet retreat? Please share your comments below.

New Release! Summer Hearts

Bundle up and save with captivating stories celebrating the promise of new beginnings and beautiful summers. This set includes three sweet and inspirational romances:

The last thing she can fix is her own life. Until one man’s offer changes everything.

A Chocolate-Box Summer Breeze
Will Emily and Joe find their happily-ever-after in a forgotten summer breeze?

A Summer To Cherish
Faith is fragile. Faith takes time. And the best solutions are always painted with love.

Special introductory price of only 99¢. Grab your copy of Summer Hearts today before the price goes up. Also available in paperback and Large Print paperback. Audiobooks for each book sold separately.


I think a few members of humanity have forgotten the true reason we’re actually here…

The horrific invasion of Ukraine by Russia and Putin’s war crimes frightens me and I can’t pretend otherwise. I can, however, offer temporary escapes in the form of our latest releases, especially for our lovers of clean, clever romances or the steamy kind, fraught with humorous diversions, and lovers’ suspense.

“You know you should stay away.
Everything about him spells trouble.
But that’s what makes him irresistible…

Find your happy-ever-after with not just one, but SIX IRRESISTIBLE BAD BOYS in these NEVER BEFORE PUBLISHED STEAMY STORIES From New York Times & USA Today Bestselling, Award-Winning Authors.”

My latest release has been getting some FIVE-star love.

“Royce Cooper is zesty, captivating, and knows how to play a good game of poker. With his talent for bringing out the best in people, Casey considers leaving her unconventional job and the past to start anew with this interesting man – if their dogs approve of their humans’ blooming relationship that’s getting hotter by the second.”

How about our Cute but Crazy Quirky Careers? This is the fourth installment of our Romantic Comedy Series, and we at the Billboard doubt it will be our last!

“What’s the weirdest job you’ve ever heard of? An ostrich groomer? A Lego inspector? A toothpick tester? How about a barroom Santa, exotic dancer, or a woman who repairs chain saws and lawnmowers?

Some of your favorite Romantic Comedy authors are returning with NEW stories to take the edge off the hassles of the day and life in general. The Word Wranglers of the Wacky, Wonderful Women, Ditzy Dudes, and Unique and Unpredictable CUTE BUT CRAZY box set collections have taken on another topic: Quirky Careers.”

How about a Pre-Order where mermaids swim with the dolphins? Guaranteed to make you sigh, “Aw…”

“After Merilee earns a coveted position at an aquarium, she discovers the love of a lifetime with Travis Swanson, a fun and flirty whale expert who says seals bore him, but not cute mammal trainers who perform with the dolphins.”

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Sentimental Journeys

My beloved Aunt Joan passed away today and since she was the subject of a post I wrote years ago entitled WOMB MATES, I hope you’ll forgive this repeat as I honor her. Please read through until the end – where you’ll find FREE goodies, new releases, and collections ready to read right now and a pre-order you’ll salivate over. Mentions of my dear husband are there too. Thanks, you are always so kind.

“Joe and I recently traveled to Virginia for a family reunion because my aunt was about to turn 83 years young, and we were also going to celebrate my cousin’s milestone birthday, too.  I was excited to be going because I hadn’t seen my aunt since 2009, shortly after my mother passed.  

Over the course of the weekend, my aunt and I shared some spirited conversations about life in general and what we’d been doing since last we’d met.  However, the statements she made that were most mesmerizing was sharing how it feels to be the surviving twin once a an adored sibling is gone.

Aunt Joan has always referred to Mom as her Womb Mate.  Mom was a dependent kind of woman, while Aunt was independent and a doer.  She stood close by my mom, her sister, and took care of her, emotionally and financially, especially after my parents divorced. Whenever Aunt visited us, she used her gift of comedic wit to make us all laugh.  I can’t remember a time that Aunt didn’t have Mom peeing her pants with her outrageous sense of humor and satires. They were two of a kind in that department, and although Mom was needy at times, she never lost her own good humor, or the ability to love and be loved. Mom was also a talented artist, and her paintings grace the walls of every single family member’s homes. That she relied on others bothered no one, because she was a shing star in her own right.

So, when we arrived at my aunt’s house, I was totally taken aback with her resemblance to Mom, perhaps for the first time ever.  Mom and Aunt are fraternal twins, but as they grew older, their mannerisms and speech patterns became nearly identical.  

The visit we had shared proved to be a powerful reminder of how much we both loved and missed Mom.  I think my Aunt Joan may miss her more than I do, if such a thing is possible because they shared their mother’s body.

They were Womb Mates, after all. And that’s kind of cool when you think about it…

Anyhow, I’m honored to share my new release CASEY’S CHARADE is a Bestselling New Release in two categories!

Here’s the blurb: “Two years after being abandoned by her lover, Casey Wagner hides behind a profession shrouded with secrecy. Her anonymity and that of her clients are key and keep everyone content until her dog escapes her care and is returned by an attractive, young neighbor.”

You can buy it for 99 cents or read it for FREE on Kindle Unlimited.

One of my favorite stories Evasion: Do No Harm, will be free beginning Feb 1-5. You won’t want to miss this one: “As the daughter of a Native American chief, Remi soon has to rely on ancestral instinct to save herself.
In the public eye, her marriage to Dr. Marshall Wagner is one to be envied, but their intimate life is a farce –
her husband is enjoying forbidden sexual adventures elsewhere.
Turnabout is foul play. With Marshall’s dark secret about to be exposed, Remi’s life is endangered.
When she’s abducted by one of his enemies, watch out for Remi as she digs deep to assure her survival – she’s about to become a real badass.”

I LOVE to receive email from my readers and this one touched my heart. I received it after Don’t Bruise the Bananas was released, which is based on my true-to-life experiences on how I became a widow.

Here’s what she wrote:

“Dear Susan

I have just finished reading Don’t Bruise the Bananas and was taken anew on the very similar journey I experienced with my late husband four years ago. In the story of Jay and Cindy, you captured the essence of the relationship between my husband of 40 years and I with the tumor, sarcasm,  road trips. Your depiction of Jay’s final journey totally took me down a very sad memory lane with your realistic description of the stages of that dreadful illness.  Even though it was upsetting to relive, I had to read to the end.

The only difference in your story was that I spoke to God and not my spiritual ancestors but my husband often had dreams of his deceased brother, father, and grandfather who were calling him to join them.  This upset him as he wanted to stay with me and our three adult children.  When he first started to have these dreams, it was before he was diagnosed, and I told him to tell his family it wasn’t his time. Six months later we had to give him permission to leave us to rejoin his spiritual family.

Your poignant story was very realistically written, and I could hear the echo of my husband’s wit and quiet suffering and endurance throughout. Although very upsetting, it was a good reminder of my husband, Antonio’s character, and his final journey after many long, enjoyable road trips together. Thank you.”

Here’s the book link if you’d like to peek:

How about our latest Romantic Comedy? QUIRKY CAREERS? You bet! Follow the Fun with NEW Romantic Comedies!
There’s humor in everything, even that economic obligation called a career!
What’s the weirdest job you’ve ever heard of? An ostrich groomer? A Lego inspector? A toothpick tester? How about a barroom Santa, exotic dancer, or a woman who repairs chain saws and lawnmowers?

Here’s mine: Just Horsing Around: NEW! Horse ranchers turned sleuths, Joshua and Bella endeavor to purge an unsavory character who’s destroying their precious neighboring wetlands – and confront falling love in the process. Grab it here for just 99 cents or FREE on Kindle Unlimited:

So, ya’ll ready for THIS? A Preorder that’ll blow your socks off: IRRESISTIBLE BAD BOYS

 You know you should stay away.
Everything about him spells trouble.
But that’s what makes him irresistible…

Find your happy-ever-after with not just one, but SEVEN IRRESISTIBLE BAD BOYS in these NEVER BEFORE PUBLISHED STEAMY STORIES From New York Times & USA Today Bestselling, Award-Winning Authors.

Get it for just 99 cents or FREE on Kindle Unlimited:

Hey, thanks for sticking around – because there’s so much joy in sharing fine romances and good news. Hugs!

Changes – For The Better

            When a person experiences a catastrophic event, it changes the way they breathe, work, play, eat, everything – I’m sure you get my meaning.

My husband Joe died seventeen months ago and, not only was he my soulmate and lover, he was the inspiration for the Cindy’s Crusades series. He and I collaborated the story Dinosaurs and Cherry Stems, a fun fictionalized-nonfiction tale about events leading up to how we met, became lovers, and eventually married. We named ourselves Cindy and Jay DeMatteo and although many elements of the story were true, we took many literary liberties with the rest. The book, an award winning, bestseller, inspired a sequel The Sugar Ticket, and a bunch of other novellas followed, introducing new characters and plots, but always including the Cindy and Jay couple from Dinosaurs. This is the link to Cindy’s Crusades:

I’d begun a third novel Don’t Bruise the Bananas around the time Joe got sick and, after he spirited off to a better dimension, I decided to rewrite Bananas without the fiction. I hope to get it finished very soon. Here’s a taste:

Because I have been floundering with writing such profoundly devastating events, with Joe’s whispered encouragement, I created a new series called Love’s Salvation. Currently, there are five standalone stories in my new collection, with more on the way. Here’s the link to Love’s Salvation: Love’s Salvation

On October 6, the Authors’ Billboard will release an intense collection of stories now available for pre-order Invincible Diversity: A Premier Collection of Eight Exceptional Stories, Four Brand-New, From New York Times and USA Today Bestselling, Award-Winning Authors. Eight unique and unusual love stories that tackle the tough issues we face every day – racial acceptance or intolerance, whether black, brown, red or yellow, differing religious views, sexuality, family and social values, and so much more.

In addition to our many Romance and Suspense anthologies, we’ve just released a Second Bestselling Comedy Collection: Cute But Crazy: Ditzy Dudes: SIX BRAND NEW Side-splitting Romantic Comedies plus two read-tested surprise titles by Eight New York Times and USA Today Bestselling and Award-Winning Authors, CUTE BUT CRAZY 2 – DITZY DUDES is the follow-up boxset to the Bestselling Cute But Crazy – Wacky, Wonderful Women.
Get ready for another Romantic Comedy box set from the fabulous Authors’ Billboard gang. Come get acquainted with these charming and sexy Ditzy Dudes and the ladies they bring Happy (and tickle-bone funny) Ever After’s to.

Mimi’s Gang and the Authors’ Billboard are already looking forward to the Christmas Season. This year we’re excited to present: DEAR SANTA: A Christmas Wish

http://Dear Santa: A Christmas Wish (The Holiday Series Book 3)

DEAR SANTA is filled with 18 brand new stories about characters who have special wishes to ask the big guy during this season.Most of us have had experiences when something we’ve desperately wanted is so close that Santa seems the perfect person to ask for the miracle.
When one believes, it’s amazing the conflicts that are overcome and the surprises that can follow.

You’ll be amazed by each of these fantastic holiday books full of Christmas cheer and thrilling romance we’ve written for your entertainment. Pre-Order Here! http://Dear Santa: A Christmas Wish (The Holiday Series Book 3)

Thanks for hopping by and don’t forget to check out our monthly contest – Win Gift Cards, eBooks and more! Enter here: