Tuesday, July 30, 2013

I got thrown out of a hotel

My friend and fellow author, Marian Allen posted on her blog about her, T. Lee Harris and Ginny Flemming's recent stay at The Galt House in Louisville, Kentucky while they attended Fandom Fest. Their exploit reminded me of my last trip to The Galt House, which was when I was in high school a LONG time ago.

I always tell people that my claim to fame is that I was once thrown out of the Galt House. Yep, me. It really happened, I was thrown out of The Galt House, that ritzy five-star hotel that is so overly priced that I could never afford to stay there.

Here's what happened. When I was in high school, I took an acting and a stage production class. One of the highlights of taking those classes was a trip to Actor's Theater of Louisville to see a production. We saw "A Christmas Carol." and it was so good. Back then, the school recruited parents to drive for field trips. There were no school bus trips for things like seeing a play. My mom was one of the drivers since she knew how to drive around Louisville. We arrive early, way too early to get into the theater, so we decided to go over to The Galt House. It was close to Christmas and the hotel would be decorated so pretty.

Apparently, the other schools attending that also arrived early had the same idea, except that the other kids were elementary age children. You know, the ones that are told to be quiet, keep to themselves, and not cause problems, but can't. Yeah, those kids. We were juniors in high school and did know how to act in public, especially in a hotel as nice as The Galt House. However, with hundreds of kids (I'm sure it was hundreds) running around the hotel, the staff was getting a little frustrated.

The next thing we knew, WE were being asked to leave the hotel immediately. We tried to explain it wasn't us, but you know, we were the teenagers so we got the blame. Out the door we went. Fortunately, our teacher and the parents with us knew it wasn't us, so we didn't get into any trouble. But, as soon as we got back to the school, news traveled fast that we were thrown out of The Galt House and there was a little explaining to do to our principal, thanks to the teacher and our parents, he was convinced we did no wrong, but that was a running joke for us the rest of the school year.

If you're interested in reading about Marian's stay at The Galt House, which is probably more interesting than my story, check out Marian Allen's blog.


p.s, if you're interesting in reading about my Fandom Fest experience, scroll down.

Sunday, July 28, 2013

My Adventure at Fandom Fest 2013

Saturday, I embarked to Louisville, Kentucky to attend Fandom Fest and what a day I had. The last time I was there, was two years ago and I had an absolute blast. This year, not so much.

Let's start with the bad stuff. The line to get in, or what I was told was the line to get in. The web site said the doors opened on Saturday at 9:00 am. I arrived at 8:30 am and went to Will Call to get my ticket. The wait there was about 30 minutes. I was okay with that. Once I got my ticket, I had no idea where to go. I finally found a hall with a long line in it, so I got in it. A security guy came by saying it was the line to get in and that the 9 am time was for the VIP tickets only. The door for the General Admission tickets would open at 10:00 am. That was the first thing that made everyone mad. The web site had not said that.

Then, they decided the line needed to be in the room where the tickets were sold, so they moved us all back into that larger room. After the 10:00 came and went and we hadn't moved in the line, frustrations and tempers were beginning to get hot. Then, a different security guy came by and said if anyone had purchased a ticket for a photo op, to follow him. We asked for clarification of what the line was for that we were in. He said, general admission. I asked about the Literary Panels because the first one had just started and I was still in line. He said I was in the correct line.

Between 10:00 and 11:00, our line moved twice and finally I was across the hallway from door to get in. At that point, we could see people going in and out at will. At 11:30, I finally made it into the vendor room on the first floor. It was that point that I realized that the line I was in for autographs from an actor in the Walking Dead TV show. I had already missed the first two sessions of Literary Panels and my legs were going numb from standing for so long. The whole time, I had been in the wrong line, even though we had asked numerous times was our line was for.

I walked through the vendor room on the bottom floor and didn't see any of my friends, so I headed out and up to the second floor where all the action was. Wild looking people in character costumes filled the room. I found my friends at the Hydra Publications booth and was very happy when owner, Frank Hall asked me if I wanted to sit down. (Thank you, Frank!) As result of a surgery I had some time ago, I cannot stand for more than 20 minutes without my legs going numb. Normally, I can sit for a few minutes and then I'm good to go. I had stood in line for 3 1/2 hours, so you can only imagine how my legs felt. After sitting for a few minutes, the numbness did not go away. In fact, when I went to bed Saturday night, they were still numb. These folks that are running Fandom Fest have got to get their act together. They had some wonderful celebrities in attendance, but the attendees were not happy with out things were run. I saw numerous complaints on Twitter and Facebook, not to mention talking with many people in attendance. I also noticed even a few tweets from some of the celebrities about some problems they encountered.

Okay, so now for the good stuff. Besides attending the Literary Panels, the other goals I had was to find my publisher, Sandy Sullivan of Secret Craving Publishing. She was there representing, Grimoire Books, a subsidiary of Secret Cravings. I found Sandy, as you can see below.

My second and main goal was to meet Grant Wilson, formerly of the SyFy network's show, Ghost Hunters. Grant left the show a few seasons ago to pursue some other ventures. So, when I got to Fandom Fest and found my friends, we went in search for Grant. We found his booth, but he wasn't there at the time. We walked a little more looking at the other celebrities there, most of which I didn't know because I didn't watch their shows. I never did see William Shatner, Gillian Anderson, or Stan Lee. After walking around a little more and being able to sit for an hour in one of the Literary Panels, I was back in search. Yes, he was there and the line wasn't too long. I had tweeting Grant the night before asking if he would sign my Ghost Hunters book that he co-wrote and he answered saying he would sign almost anything. Not only was I able to get my book signed, but he also a signed 8x10 photo for me too. Below is "me and Grant." Yes, I know that is not grammatically correct, but if you're a fan of the earlier seasons of Ghost Hunters, you might remember Jason Hawes always saying, "Me and Grant," when referring to them doing something. I think it took two seasons before someone told Jason to say "Grant and I." So, that's always been a little joke in between my husband and I when referring to either of the gentlemen.

One last thing, my trip home was memorable too. The brakes went out on my car as I was leaving Louisville. Not completely, but pretty bad. I was able to make it home with no problem. Luckily, after getting out of Louisville, my drive was by interstate highway all the way home. Will I go back to Fandom Fest next year? Probably not. Unless they can get Nathan Fillion there, I'll just sit at home and watch the local news stories about it.

If you have read this far, I thank you. This is probably the longest blog post I've ever written.


Sunday, July 14, 2013

The Lone Ranger: a review

One word, whimsical. It was your typical Johnny Depp movie, weird, comical, not serious at all movie. Don't get me wrong, I really liked it. Johnny Depp was great as Tonto and I really liked Armie Hammer as the Lone Ranger. My favorite part was the playing of the William Tell Overture. That has always been one of my favorite songs. I was so glad the orchestra used the original version. I wouldn't mind seeing this again and I will definitely be buying the DVD when it comes out.

I think the one thing that helped me with this movie is that my brother had told me it was kind of funny, so I went into the movie not expecting a serious drama and it wasn't. It also helped that I'm a big Johnny Depp fan.

I give this movie 4 out of 5 stars.


Congratulations to the winner

Congratulations to Zippy, zipstersclue04@gmail.com for winning a pdf copy of my western novella, "Spring Forward, Fall Back in Love."

Zippy, check your email for your prize.

Thanks everyone who participated.


Friday, July 12, 2013

Craving Cowboys!

Thanks for visiting my blog for the Secret Cravings Western Romance Blog Hop. My publisher, Secret Cravings Publishing is sponsoring the Hop with so many of their authors of western romance participating. Please check out the Secret Cravings Publishing blog for a list and links for all participating authors.

If you love sexy cowboys, you'll love "Spring Forward, Fall Back in Love," a contemporary western novella and my first in that genre. The last person Grace Taylor wanted to see was her old boyfriend, Andy Granger, but that's exactly who was standing in front of her on the porch of the ranch. To make matters worse, he was her trail guide. When an unexpected spring storm strands them in a secluded mountain cabin, memories and old feelings emerge. Can Grace keep the secret she'd kept for eight years while at the same time keep Andy at a distance?

Interested in winning a .pdf copy of "Spring Forward, Fall Back in Love?" Leave me a comment below, along with your email address and I'll randomly pick a winner on Sunday night around 8 p.m. EDT. Winner will be notified by email and announced here on my blog.

Grace walked out and sat down in one of the wooden rocking chairs. The spring day couldn't have been better for riding—sunny and cool with a light breeze. She remembered days like this when she, Cindy and Andy used to clean the stables at the Carver's ranch down the road. She had the best memories from working there.
"Miss Taylor?" a male voice called from the end of the porch.
She rose from the chair and turned to find Andy Granger waiting for her. "Andy?"  She rose from the chair and turned to find Andy Granger waiting for her. Her high school boyfriend was the last person she had hoped to run into, but now that he was in front of her, she felt her knees go a little weak. He took off his cowboy hat and wiped the sweat from his brow with his sleeve. His clingy shirt and tight jeans sent her heart into palpitations. She had to take a deep breath to calm herself.
He stepped upon the porch. "Gracie, what are you doing here?"
"I'm here for riding lessons."
"I'm your trail guide."
"No! No way am I going out on a ride with you. Get me another guide," she demanded.
"I'm the only one available.”
Grace turned and went back into the main office followed by Andy. With the young lady gone, Mr. Watkins now stood behind the counter.
"Hello, Grace. Ready for your ride?" He glanced at Andy.
"Mr. Watkins, are there any other guides available, other than Andy?"
"What's wrong with Andy?"
"Remember, he and I used to date in high school and then we broke up?"
"But, that was eight years ago. Don't you think you've both put your past behind you?"
"I would really prefer a different guide."
Mr. Watkins scratched his head. "Well, honey, I'm really sorry, but all the other guides are already out for the day."
Grace looked at Andy.
"It's me or nothing," he said.
"Fine!" She stomped out of the building, her boots clacking on the hardwood floor as she did.
Andy followed her out. "Gracie, wait." He grabbed her arm.
"Don't call me that." She jerked her arm out of his grasp.
"I always called you that."
"Not any more. That was a long time ago. Let's just stick to Grace."

"Spring Forward, Fall Back in Love" is available in several e-book formats on Secret Cravings's web site, or for Kindle on Amazon's web site, on Barnes &Noble for Nook and on All Romance E-books


Thursday, July 4, 2013

Tuesday, July 2, 2013

My Enchanted Forest

A couple weeks ago, I got home from work and my husband told me that we lived in the freaking enchanted forest. He then explained that he stood at the front door and watched a squirrel play with a rabbit in our front yard. He said they chased each other and jumped at each other. Too bad he didn't get a photo of that. Since that day, we have caught several different wildlife in our yard.

On the left, is our tom cat getting ready to pounce on a small rabbit. Fortunately for the rabbit, he got away.

Last week, I was walking by our front door and looked out to see a momma deer and her two fawns standing in our front yard. I thought she was going to step up on our porch she was so close at one point. In this photo, the other fawn was just out of the picture to the left.

Everyday, I like to take walk down our driveway with my camera to see if I can find anything new to photograph. Each time, I see a squirrel jumping around in the trees. It always seems to elude me. I could tell it did not want me taking its picture. Then, one day this little guy just sat there and posed for me. Believe me, I was just a little worried he'd jump on me.

It's always been my goal to get a picture of a wild turkey. (The two-legged kind for you drinkers out there.) We see them all the time in the fields around our house. Finally, one day I saw this one our in our yard. Turkeys are smarter than you think. If they see the slightest movement, they're gone. I had to take this picture through our window, which is why it's not quite as sharp.

Lastly, on Sunday I saw this groundhog our in our yard munching on grass and clover. I grabbed my camera and got a couple shots of him. Knowing that a groundhog can pretty much eat all of a garden, I put my camera away and went for my shotgun. He must have known, because he was gone when I got back to the door. Lucky, for him. I text my husband at work and told him what I had seen and his reply back to me was, "Shoot him! And not with a camera." My husband knew what my first thought would be.

 A few other types of wildlife that I didn't get a picture of are snakes, chipmunks, hummingbirds, mice, moles, raccoons, and opossums. Oh, and several years ago we came home one day to find a peacock sitting on top of our house. Maybe we do live in the Enchanted Forest.


A Wonderful Day of Booksigning

My Derby Rotten Scoundrel sisters, Patience Martin, holding Max, Jeanette Pope, Elaine Munsch, and myself had a wonderful time at From the G...