Monday, July 16, 2018

Wood Spirits

Alaskan Hideaway, the third book in the Northern Lights series, had a working title of "Against the Grain" which refers to the hero's hobby of woodcarving. When I was writing the book, I did some research on carving and became fascinated with the faces carved into branches called wood spirits. You can find pictures of wood spirits in the Alaskan Hideaway Pinterest board.

***

When Mac Macleod was ten, his grandfather gave him a pocket knife and taught him to whittle.

Mac was a writer by profession, but whenever he needed to work through something, like figuring out how to fix a plot hole or make a difficult parenting decision, he would pull out his grandpa's knife and whittle. He always considered his carving the woodworking version of doodling, but Ursula (our heroine) believes the wood spirits he carves are art.


Now Mac is grieving his daughter's death, and he finds the wood spirits he carves are a way of working through his emotions. Often, the pain he feels finds its way into the wood spirit's face. But as he heals, the wood spirits he creates reflect that too. And, just as his grandfather taught him, he teaches Ursula's goddaughter, Rory, to whittle.




Do you have a hobby like Mac's that helps you relax and think?

*****

He traveled 3,800 miles to be alone

…but is it what he really wants? 

Relocating to Alaska after a family tragedy seemed an ideal way for author R.D. “Mac” Macleod to grieve in peace. But solitude feels overrated when Mac’s around B&B owner Ursula Anderson and her orphaned goddaughter, Rory, who’s already bonding with his dog. Worse, he’s imagining a future with Ursula and Rory. Is it time to finally forgive himself?

Amazon   iBooks   Barnes & Noble   Google   Kobo   Harlequin

Sunday, July 1, 2018

Alaska Hideaway Launch Day

It's here! 

Alaska Hideaway is up for sale at online bookstores, or if you don't shop online, Barnes and Noble will special order it for you. You can find buy links and a sample on the Northern Lights Series Tab on this website.

And here's a little reminder from the book, to take a moment to enjoy the small miracles all around you. 


Friday, June 22, 2018

Cover Perspectives



I was thrilled when I saw the North American cover for my newest book, Alaskan Hideaway, coming out in July. I thought the landscape was amazing and illustrated one of the scenes perfectly, when Ursula and Mac share a kiss under the northern lights. 

So I was surprised to see the UK and Australian covers didn't go with the northern  lights theme. Instead, they emphasize the relationship between Mac, a man who has lost his daughter, and Rory, a little girl who has lost her parents. I have to admit, I love these covers too. I just wish Blossom the dog could have been included.

What do you think? Do you prefer scenery or people on your covers? Which is your favorite of these three?

Tuesday, June 5, 2018

Home to Alaska


Springtime in Anchorage


The days are long, and the Chugach mountains are beautiful.


The geese are back.


The May Day trees are blooming, and the whole city smells like flowers.

It's good to be home.

Tuesday, May 22, 2018

Trust in Tomorrow


“Live each day like it’s your last.”

I tried to find the origin of that quote, but it’s been attributed to everyone from Ray Charles to an old Hebrew saying.  I can see what they’re going for. We shouldn’t put off doing the things we’re always wanted to do, or ending a grudge, or hugging our loved ones, because one day it will be too late. But there’s a problem.

If we truly lived each day like it was our last, we’d never plant a garden, or raise a child, or write a book. We’d never even crack open a James Michener novel. All these things take time, and faith. We have to believe that the seeds we plant in the garden today will mean fresh green beans to eat and share in a few months. We have to believe, through all those diaper changes and midnight feedings, that this baby will grow and thrive. We have to believe that these words we put on the pages everyday will grow into the story we’re trying to tell.



A better motto, I think, might be “Trust in Tomorrow.” Because few great things can be accomplished in a day.



Like most things in life, it’s all about balance. So sure, let go of that grudge and reconcile with someone. Take the time to go for a walk in the park with someone you love. Schedule a date to try skydiving. Taste Key lime pie. Do it today.



But spend the rest of the day making progress toward a greater goal. Dream big. Tomorrow will come.

What do you think? Is there something you’ve always meant to do that you can do today? Or are you busy working toward a larger goal? How do you find balance?

Monday, May 7, 2018

Goodreads Giveaway - Alaskan Hideaway



Goodreads Book Giveaway


Alaskan Hideaway by Beth  Carpenter

Alaskan Hideaway

by Beth Carpenter


Giveaway ends May 21, 2018.

See the giveaway details
at Goodreads.


Enter Giveaway


He traveled 3,800 miles to be alone

…but is it what he really wants? 

Relocating to Alaska after a family tragedy seemed an ideal way for author R.D. “Mac” Macleod to grieve in peace. But solitude feels overrated when Mac’s around B&B owner Ursula Anderson and her orphaned goddaughter, Rory, who’s already bonding with his dog. Worse, he’s imagining a future with Ursula and Rory. Is it time to finally forgive himself?

Wednesday, April 25, 2018

The Garden Gamble


It’s spring! The birds are in their most colorful plumage, hanging out in pairs. The fruit trees and early flowers are blooming. And I’m making plans for a garden.

Spring comes, whether you plan for it or not. And yet I feel compelled to participate. Last year I grew gourds, which I made into birdhouses and hung this spring. We’ll see if the birds actually want to use them. I also put out feeders, so that I can see the pretty little house finches flit in and out.

Last year,  we planted a cherry and a peach tree. This spring they’re both blooming. I’m hoping we’ll get at least a preview of the kind of fruit we can expect when they’re mature.

And last year, I went to the Iris Society’s exhibit, and saw some amazing iris blooms. But the best part was that they had some of their divisions for sale. I picked up some from the bargain section, the ones where nobody was sure what color they might turn out to be. And so I was thrilled when they bloomed for the first time and turned out to be one of my favorite flower colors.



All those preparations from last year are paying off this spring. Later, when frost danger is over, we’ll plant tomatoes, zucchini, pumpkins, and probably a few other seeds that were just too interesting to pass up. And come fall, we’ll have loads of fresh tomatoes to share with the neighbors. Or not. It’s always a gamble.


Maybe that’s what makes gardening so compelling. It’s like a poker game. You never know what hand nature is going to deal you. But if you ante up and play out your hand, you may reap incredible rewards. Or all your work might just go to feed the rabbits and aphids. Is it worth the risk? I think so.

Do you?

Thursday, March 29, 2018

Cover Reveal and Launch Team

It's here! The cover to my latest book, Alaskan Hideaway, up on AMAZON. The book is available for preorder and comes out July 1st. I love the northern lights and the cozy little cabin. What do you think?

He traveled 3,800 miles to be alone

…but is it what he really wants? 

Relocating to Alaska after a family tragedy seemed an ideal way for author R.D. “Mac” Macleod to grieve in peace. But solitude feels overrated when Mac’s around B&B owner Ursula Anderson and her orphaned goddaughter, Rory, who’s already bonding with his dog. Worse, he’s imagining a future with Ursula and Rory. Is it time to finally forgive himself?

I'm putting together a lauch team to read and promote advance copies of the book. Fifteen people will be chosen randomly. If you're a sweet romance fan and would be interested, you can find details in my lastest NEWSLETTER. Don't wait too long; sign-up ends April 20th.

Wednesday, March 21, 2018

Brunch in Alaska

Warm temperatures after a big snow mean it's hard for Anchorage moose to get around, so they're wandering out of the parks and into the streets where the going is easier. This one dropped by to trim my birch trees this morning. Roxy sounded the alarm, but the moose ignored her.






Tuesday, March 13, 2018

Ice Scupltures in Fairbanks


My daughter and her boyfriend came to visit, so this past weekend, we went to Fairbanks, Alaska to see the ice sculpture park. The international ice carving championship wasn't held this year, but they still had an amazing collection of ice sculpture. 


There were carvings made from single blocks of ice, about 5x3x8 feet, with amazing detail. Then there were the larger scupltures, made from multiple blocks stacked together. If you look closely at some of them, you can see the seams where the blocks meet. And finally, there was the kid's park, with climbing sculptures like this ship, plus slides, mazes, and even spinning cups of ice. 



We talked with one of the sculptors who told us about the carving process and how he got into it. He said last year's competition included contestants from forty US states and twenty different countries. 





I was amazed by the intricate detail in these sculptures. We saw them in the daylight, but I'm sure they were even more beautiful at night when lit by colored lights. Well worth the visit.





Thursday, March 1, 2018

Facebook Hop March 1-2


March 1st and 2nd, I'm participating in a Facebook Hop with twelve other authors. There's a grand prize, as well as a prize for each hop stop. My page is giving away an autographed copy of The Alaskan Catch and a reader's necklace. Hope you can hop on by. 


My prizes for the Hop

Monday, January 1, 2018