Thursday, December 11, 2014

Addictive Reads: Our Favorite Things December Giveaway Event

Santa with Roses, Lily Silver 2012

Enter to win the Kindle fire and other Gift Cards at the main site.

Addictive Reads Holiday event page

My Gift to readers this month:  Thank you for being there.

**Dark Hero, A Gothic Romance, is Free on Smashwords this month. Full length historical-paranormal romance!

Link to the e-book giveaway are on the bottom of the page. And don't forget to visit the other blogs for more goodies!

Hello readers and friends, 

I'm part of the Addictive Reads collaboration of authors. This month, for December, we're celebrating Christmas by sharing some great prizes with readers, including a Kindle fire for one lucky reader, loaded with our books.  So indulge yourself a little by entering the contest to see if you might win a Kindle Fire as the grand prize, or  gift card to buy yourself a few of your favorite things.  

 Each of us has agreed to share our favorite things with you.  If you'll bear with me, I'll share my most favorite Christmas things with you. I'll keep it short and sweet.  Here goes.......

Top 7 Favorite things about Christmas:


Movie:  White Christmas!    It is my Martini Movie, one I share each year with my dear husband. The dancing in this is spectacular. It has romance, dancing, a heartwarming Christmas story of helping others, and BING CROSBY singing! Also has Danny Kaye as the comedic relief, Rosemary Clooney singing, and Vera Miles Dancing! It's artsy, with musical numbers in the movie that will entertain you. What's not to love? 



Candy: Angel Food Candy!  (also known as seafoam candy or sponge candy) Loved it as a kid, still love it today. I received a recipe from my sister years ago to make it, but after several botched batches, I just buy the stuff every year.   


Drink:  Tom and Jerry.  I'm old fashioned in that. My parents drank this on Christmas, and I still keep the tradition. Its warm, creamy with whipped cream, sugar and eggs batter, and it has rum in it. Like a hot toddy. Sprinkle nutmeg on top and ah..... it's a great winter warm up drink.    



Christmas Cartoon:  Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer. It came out in 1964, when I was a wee lass. I watched it faithfully every year as a child, and then with my children. Thanks to the digital age we can buy the DVD, don't have to wait for it to come to broadcast TV each year like when I was a kid. 

 Food:  Lefse---a family tradition from my Norwegian side. We had lefse all the time when I was a kid, but especially on Christmas. In our family tradition with our kids, we have Lefsa on the Christmas Buffet every year, and there's never any left over. It's a potato type flat bread, like a tortilla. You put butter on it and roll it up, YUM!



 Music:  The Rat Pack Christmas Album. Hey, there's just something magical about Frank Sinatra, Dean Martin and Sammy Davis Jr. belting out Christmas songs that makes me happy. And who doesn't like Frank's singing? 

Time for a Martini and some fun!  How about a game of Spades, or a game of Scrabble? That's our tradition after the grandkids are asleep on Christmas eve.

 Christmas Romance Novel: The Wallflowers Christmas by Lisa Kleypas.  I love the series, with four women, wallflowers, seeking beaus. Each of the books was compelling as the four women were friends and helped each other win their honey. So, the Christmas book is all four married women together for the holidays at Stoney Cross Manor, with their families.  I love it when an author gives us a peek at the couple after the happily ever after at the end of their story, and Kleypas does this beautifully with Annabelle, Lillian, Evie and Daisy and their dashing husbands. The four women do a little Christmas magic to help out another wallflower find happiness and true love at Christmas. 

That's all for now. It's not the end of my list, but my top favorite things of the Christmas season. I hope your Christmas is the best one ever.  Don't forget to go to the main site to sign up for the Kindle Fire giveaway and the gift cards. This might be your lucky season! 

My Gift to readers this month:  Thank you for being there.

Dark Hero, A Gothic Romance, is Free on Smashwords this month. Full length historical-paranormal romance!  Dark Hero on Smashwords

This Event with Addictive Reads goes on until December 31st, so check back here frequently for new free gifts of books to my awesome readers. It will change regularly.  



Sunday, December 7, 2014

Serial Sundays Update: The Gypsy's Curse

Note: buy links are at bottom of page for The Gypy's Curse

For those of you who have been following the serialized romance on this blog, The Gypsy's Curse, I have good news. It is now published, and out in the world. You were given a rare first glimpse of an author's rough draft writing this past year. I started posting in February of 2014 and ended on December 3rd, 2014.  The whole novel was posted here in increments. 

Thank you so much for following my progess, and Zara's progress!   The book is now available for sale on all digital platforms and will soon be available in print form as well.   The posts of excerpts are no longer available on this blog, except for a couple of entries I left up--the beginning, and the end posts. I hope I entertained you, as that is the main goal of every fiction writer, to entertain!     



So, here is a bow from Stephan St. John, who played the deliciously handsome and cunning hero in TGC,  I hope he entertained you with his wild side.  

Stephan was a fun character to write,  a merchant class lawyer in regency England with a little problem--being a werewolf. I made him gallant and noble, as well as a little scary--the perfect blend in a Gothic Romance, right?


And here is a curtsy from our heroine, Zara the gypsy girl, a.k.a. Miss Sarah Jennings.  She was a bit more difficult ot write, as I had to keep reminding myself that she has had no formal education and so her internal thoughts and observations had to be within her own world-view. I found myself editing word use more and more with her as I couldn't have her use complex words like diversion (substitute fun here and you get the picture) that an educated person of our time might use. Hopefully, we (myself and my editor) caught all those little pesky quirks of word use so our 19th century uneducated woman didn't end up sounding like a college graduate. 


***Note--I mean no formal education here, that does not mean she's dumb, but rather that she's had to educate herself through reading books, as many women had to do in that time.  Fortunately, the widow who took her in helped her get past the rudimentary reading lessons she had as a child and expand her reading skills so she could pursue self education in Stephan St. John's extensive library at Huntington Abbey.  Zara taught me a lot about writing, and her POV was often a challenge.  Hopefully I grew as a writer in this story. 


So, we close the book on Stephan and Zara, and move on to the next writing project, the sequel to Some Enchanted Waltz--Some Enchanted Dream~  (The adventures of Tara and Adrian continue!) 

Thank you all, 

Lily Silver, Author

Links for The Gypsy's Curse digital books online: 

Amazon Kindle




Thursday, December 4, 2014

Christmas Wishes: Indulge yourself this year

Christmas Pudding featured in A Dark Hero Xmas

Christmas is upon us. It's December, my favorite time of year. I'm celebrating by having a 3 day ebook giveaway on of one of my Christmas Stories. 

Click link below to get your free copy

 The Widow's Christmas Wish--Free today and Friday only

The Widow's Christmas Wish is book two in the A Dark Hero Christmas Series.  It is part of  a Trilogy that continues the story of three women from the full length historical novel, Dark Hero, as they celebrate the Christmas season.  The Widow's Christmas Wish is the second book in the series, but a stand alone. 


At the end of Dark Hero, the hero's mother arrived to celebrate Christmas. I ended the book with mom freaking out as she thought her son was dead.  He's a recluse and shuns social gatherings. She walks in on Christmas Eve to find a party in full swing, complete with musicians playing and dancing. So, her first thought is that he died and someone else lives at the manor. Now, the reason I had to have an abrupt end to Dark Hero--leaving it with mom arriving and freaking out--is because the book was already a full 400 page novel.  So, I wrote three new stories, love stories with each one featuring one of the female characters in the main story.  The series features three women, a bride, a widow and a companion (single woman) celebrating Christmas together over the week of a family houseparty. It's about family traditions, romance, Christmas traditions, and the irritations of family that come with the holidays. The series is also available in one book, if you prefer to have them all in one set.  You can buy them separately or in one volume.  


Christmas Feast in Dining Room circa 1800

  Chances are, if you have a few decades of Christmases under your belt, you've experienced Christmas with that annoying, arrogant or  unpleasant relative.  In the first story, Christmas at Ravencrest, the new bride Elizabeth is struggling to create a wonderful Christmas for her family, both old and new. She's got two brothers to please, a cantankerous grandfather, a new husband, his family--including his mother--ah, the mother-in-law.  We all have fond memories our husband's mother, right? Especially in those first months of marriage, when everything is new and expectations are high. 


Elizabeth is in a strange place, the Caribbean, in a new home, far from her beloved England. She's trying to create a traditional Christmas for her family in a non-traditional setting.  Her grandfather is ill, and is being a jerk about celebrating Christmas, making everyone uncomfortable. Her younger brother is being petulant, demanding a traditional English Christmas Pudding when they are on a remote island in the tropics,  and the mother-in-law will arrive at any moment. Elizabeth has not yet met her husband's mother, so this Christmas celebration is fraught with anxiety for her, as you can well imagine! Worse for it, her new husband is acting odd, playing pranks on her and trying to keep her distracted. Could he be hiding a very special present or is he just being a jerk--as the honeymoon fever wanes?  (You'll learn why he's doing this in A Christmas Kiss, as Chloe the companion and the staff are instructed by him to keep Elizabeth from entering her private salon for two days before Christmas--to hide his gift)



The current free offering is about the Widow, Elizabeth's Mother-in-Law, Alicia Beaumont. See top link and 1st book cover above) The story is told from Alicia's point of view, with her struggles with her grown son who is a very difficult person to deal with. Her only child, Donovan, is a recluse. She learns on arrival that he's finally married, and is hurt that he didn't even invite her to the wedding or notify her that he married a few months earlier. Alicia also encounters a new butler, Giles St. Vincent, who will turn her heart and her predictable life upside down during her stay at Ravencrest Plantation.  It was a fun book to write, as anyone with adult children and can fully understand a mother's disappointent or irritation with how her child turned out as an adult, despite her best intentions. 


The Third book is about the Paid Companion, Chloe Ramirez.  She is a servant at Ravencrest. An upper servant, but even so, a paid companion to the lady of the house. Chloe's never had a real Christmas before. She is confused by the traditions, and sees all the prep and fuss as a lot of work.  Chloe is in love with the master's dependent relative, Gareth. They have been meeting in secret, having a little romance on the side. Chloe is hoping to get Gareth to reveal his affections for her publicly, so they don't have to hide their relationship. She's using some good old fashioned voodoo magic and a Christmas tradition of the kissing ball to get Gareth to come forward.  Her story is about new love, a servant and a single woman reaching for forbidden love in the form of her employer's family member.  Her Voodoo spell affects other men instead of the one she intended. 


As we enter the Christmas Season, take time for joy. Take time for you. As a mom and grandma I know how hectic it all gets as we shop, make cookies and oodles of goodies for the family, plan the meal, and coordinate the family event. It might even involve extensive cleaning if you are hosting Christmas at your house this year. But PLEASE---Don't get too busy and become frustrated. Do something nice, just for you, to make you happy. Eat chocolate, take a day off for just you, buy yourself that nice thing you've been wanting. Watch a Christmas movie--tear jerker or romantic comedy--your choice, not the kids this time. Read a Christmas romance--I'm giving you one here if you like. But please, please indulge yourself a little so when the big day finally comes, you can be calm, serene, and enjoy the day with friends and family. 


As an added bonus, you can download Dark Hero, the first book in the series, and the main book, FREE, on Smashwords allows you to pick your ebook device, and offers all kinds of e-reader or pdf options. Smashwords link




Lily Silver, Author


Wednesday, December 3, 2014

The Gypsy's Curse, A Christmas Eve Wedding!

When the clock struck seven o'clock on Christmas Eve, Zara was helped into the library to meet the wedding party. She was escorted by old Jasper, and leaned on a cane for support. Her gown was a lovely gold brocade. She imagined herself a princess in such a rich gown. It had been a hand-me-down of Julia St. John's, but so was this wonderful house and the bridegroom who waited for her at the library hearth.
The doors were opened and she allowed Jasper to lead her to the makeshift altar in front of the massive stone hearth. The alter was a high table, and behind it were two chairs, one for her, and one for St. John. They were billed as 'the invalids' to the justice of the peace, and thus the need for him to travel to Huntington Abbey to help them make their vows instead of meeting them at Gretna Green. The library had been festooned with greenery, red ribbons and bright candle light. It was bright and cheery. The scent of cedar boughs, and fresh pine cuttings mingled with the essence of apple cider and cinnamon. Beyond that, the fragrance of roasting chestnuts was an invitation to linger by the fire. As her intended still felt a chill from the day before, it seemed best to sit with their backs to the roaring fire as they spoke their marriage vows.
The only people in attendance were Annie, Jasper, Maggie, the doctor, Mr. Leeds, and the justice of the peace's wife. The middle-aged couple had traveled here to conduct the ceremony, as they were but a few miles from the Scottish border, or so Zara had been told. She believed it was St. John's money more than their invalid status that made the couple rouse themselves from their warm fire and come to Huntington Abbey to conduct the marriage ceremony and then claim it all took place at Gretna Green on ink and paper.
"I now present Mr. and Mrs. Stephan St. John," the justice of the peace said with finality and moved to the side so the seated bride and groom to be seen by their well-wishers.
"I think you forgot something." Stephan said, with all seriousness.
"No, I didn't." The justice replied, appearing perplexed. He pushed his round spectacles up on his nose and looked to his wife for confirmation.
"You forgot to say 'you may kiss the bride'." Stephan reminded the fellow.
A look of consternation passed over the justice's face. "Well, kiss her, sir. Why do you hesitate? You're married, you don't need my permission."
Laughter ringed around them as Stephan lifted Zara's chin with his thumb and gazed into her eyes with tenderness before brushing his lips across hers with a sweet, gentle possession. 
As he drew away, he cradled her face between his palms. "Merry Christmas, Mrs. St. John," Stephan whispered with his face inches from hers. "We must make it through the next hours with our guests. It pains me to do so. If you aren't careful, I may devour you this night."
Zara smiled. "I hope so, my gentle beast. If not, I should be sadly disappointed." 

The End!   
Copyright Lily Silver, 2014

So, will Richard McManus be successful in finding a cure for werewolfish, or shape shifting. Will he tame Mr. Leeds? Will he become one himself, and open up that Home for Forelorn Werewolf Bachelors he was talking about? 

I hope you have enjoyed this serial romance, and in getting a glimpse into a writer's life, the rough draft posts have been written mostly the week of the post, as an incentive for me to finish this book. It was first began in November 2009, and never finished. I decided that in order to finish it, as I have had so many other projects going on, that I needed to do something to make myself publicly accountable. So, posting a chapter a week has helped. It was tough some weeks, but I made it through. And as you have been so patient, I decided to bring the last part fast and post daily so you could get to the end. Thanks for your support and encouragement. 
Lily Silver, Historical Romance Author.