Tuesday, November 28, 2017

Reindeer Games

Reindeer time!

My favorite Christmas movie growing up was Rudolf, the Red-nosed Reindeer, so when I got ready to write a Christmas story, it was only natural it would take place on a reindeer farm in AlaskaTo write the story, I had to learn all about reindeer, both real and fictional. That involved, among other things, a visit to a reindeer farm in Palmer, Alaska. Here I am, deep in research.

Ryan, the boy in the story, visits the reindeer farm where he feeds the goats, pigs, and rabbits, visits the chickens, and finally gets to lead around a real reindeer. Afterward he gets hot chocolate and a peanut butter reindeer sandwich like this one.


This didn't make the story, but I can picture Ryan and Marissa collaborating to make a few of these adorable reindeer ornaments for the tree on the farm.

To celebrate the upcoming launch of A Gift for Santa, there's a book tour going on all week, and the theme is – you guessed it – reindeer. You'll find reviews, excerpts, posts, interviews, and a great giveaway. Check it out here!

Are you a reindeer fan?

Find it at:

Sunday, November 26, 2017

A Gift for Santa Book Tour

Reindeer Games!

The book tour starts today, and the theme is reindeer. You'll find excerpts, reindeer posts, reviews, and interviews. Plus there's a great giveaway: a handcrafted quilted reindeer tote bag big enough for all Santa's toys, a copy of The Alaskan Catch, and fun reindeer goodies. 

All the stops are listed below. Hope to see you there!

Tour Schedule

November 27th:
November 28th:
November 29th:
November 30th:
December 1st:
December 2nd: Grand Finale

Sunday, November 19, 2017

It's a Party!

Heartwarming authors are throwing a party, and you're invited!

Confession: I'm not much of a party animal. Honestly, I'm more comfortable curled up with a book and a cup of tea than celebrating with a roomful of people. On top of that, this is my very first time hosting a Facebook party, so I'm a little nervous. 

But all the Heartwarming fans I've ever met are both kind and friendly, so I make a mistake or two, I'm sure they'll forgive me. With all those writers and readers, the conversation is sure to be fun. And I've got some great prizes to give away, like this winter scene apron and pretty reindeer ornament. The other writers are offering prizes as well. 
I'm 99.9% sure it's going to be a fabulous party. Hope you can make it. If you haven't yet saved the date on Facebook, you can find the event details and indicate your interest HERE. The party is on Nov. 29th and I'll be posting at 1:55pm Eastern Time. (That's 9:55am Alaska Time). See you there!

Saturday, November 11, 2017


My daughter and I had a great time throwing pots yesterday. There’s something special about starting with nothing but a lump of clay, and using only the wheel and my hands, turning it into a useful and attractive vessel.

That’s why I enjoy writing. It starts with nothing but an idea, but like the pot, gentle pressure and manipulation turn the idea into a story. One of the wonderful things about potting is that if the pot isn’t coming out just right, the potter can push the clay back down and try again. Stories are the same. The shape often needs to be pushed or pulled or sometimes completely rebuilt, and that’s okay. It’s all part of the creative process.

I think people have an inborn need to create. Creativity, to me, is to take something and transform it into something new, something better. To turn raw ingredients into delicious meals. To turn balls of yarn into warm hats. To fix a broken lamp and turn it into a bedside reading light.

People create in different ways. I knew a woman who didn’t consider herself creative, but she was volunteer secretary and treasurer for half a dozen organizations. She took numbers and ideas and organized them into a usable form everyone could understand. Coaches take kids full of nothing but unfocused energy and transform them into players. Parents start with helpless babies and transform them into loving, caring adults. Caregivers turn sickness into health.

Sometimes, creativity is hard. It’s easier to destroy than to create. As anyone who has thrown a temper tantrum can attest, destruction can be satisfying too. Briefly. But over the long haul, smashing a bowl isn’t nearly as fulfilling as creating one.