Out and About – At the Museum

Sometimes we authors escape from behind our desks.  I escaped to the Tipton County Museum.  And while there had a rare  photograph taken. (I’m the one on the right.) Stop by http://ow.ly/AL9R30dEWac to see it.
 
I’ll be back on September 22 from 5:30 to 7 p.m. for the Gift Shop Gala at the Tipton County Museum. Wishing the other authors who’ll be there lots of sales and happy readers.

~till next time, Helen

Last Meal? What Takes Forever to Cook

For a bit of fun, another post from the MFRWauthor 52-week challenge.

Saw the topic of last meal and a line from the television series, Air America, just leaped from the pen, “Peking Duck.” Now that might seem to be a strange choice for a meat and potatoes kind of gal, so I’ll give you the background. After being captured by South American revolutionaries, Lorenzo Lamas, aka Rio Garnett, and his co-pilot/friend were offered a last meal before their execution by firing squad. The friend said, “Peking Duck.” After their captors went away, Lamas inquired why. The buddy explained it takes 3 days to make, I was trying to buy time.”

Besides lots of time for a meal to be prepared–and later, and even greater amount to eat it, here’s a few items for a last meal.

First, the appetizers: shrimp cocktail and stuffed mushrooms.

Then there are several entrees. Filet mignon with sweet potato, loaded with cinnamon brown sugar, and freshly churned butter. A heaping side plate of lobster tail with drawn butter, and fried scallops. Hot dinner rolls, fresh out of the oven, with lots of butter to help things go down.

Where’s the vegetables you asked? Not for this gal’s final forging.

The final course took a little more thought. Going with the delay approach, rice pudding. For those with a lactose intolerance, that would guarantee at least 3 hours in the bathroom. On second thought, the captors might think it funny to hold off the toilet run. Note to self, no pudding, no ice cream. Boston cream pie, chocolate eclair, (no make that 2 eclairs, properly chilled) and a slice of death by chocolate cake. Notice the theme? Chocolate – my favorite food group.

I almost forget the drinks, which unlike James Bond’s preference is not a shaken vodka martini or champagne.

Read the rest of the menu at http://helenhenderson-author.blogspot.com/2017/06/last-meal-what-takes-forever-to-cook.html.

 

I Need A Hero

It’s time to share another post. This time one not quite vintage. It’s from week 19 of the 52 week 2017 challenge

Welcome to week 19 of the challenge. The first thought that came to mind for the topic, the ideal romance hero, was the chorus from “Holding Out For A Hero” by the welsh singer, Bonnie Tyler. I first heard the song when it was used as the theme for the television program, Cover Up, and have found myself humming it as I created a character. Even though my two series, the Dragshi Chronicles and The Windmaster Novels, are fantasy, they also cross the fence into romance.

So what marks an ideal romantic hero? If you’re holding out for a hero, what do you want?

I write fantasies filled with strong women. Ellspeth was a ship captain, respected by her men. The women of the Dragshi Chronicles were of equal strength. Anastasia held her own in a marksmanship competition against three men. Glyn was a strong enough fighter to protect her mate’s back in battle. So a man worth walking alongside my heroine. He has to balance his urge to protect her with the understanding that sometimes she has to fight alone. In Windmaster, Lord Dal proved that when he allowed the woman he cared for to exact her own revenge for the murder of her cabin boy. So the first attribute of the heroes I create are that they have to be worthy of the women they love–or to paraphrase Lois L’Amour, “a man to walk beside a woman, not in front of her.”

Often a hero is described as tall, dark, and handsome. I’m short, so tall isn’t a requirement, as long as he can tuck my head beneath his chin when he holds me. Dark? Well, I’ve known some hero blonds. Which leaves handsome. My heroes don’t need to be drop dead gorgeous. But easy on the eyes doesn’t hurt.

An accent can melt a hardened heart, especially the deep, melodic burr of a Scottish highlander. Or a tanned hunk from Australia. Especially if he’s in jeans, a bush hat, and slicker. Oh, did I forget to say “shirt?”
Not all heros are alpha males bearing the scars of battle. Some are just ordinary men with a sense of duty and honor doing what needs to be done to survive day-to-day. I will also confess that I’ve always had a thing for men who can fix things. Back in the day, the original MacGyver (Richard Dean Anderson) would have been on my short list. Of course since I always wanted to fly amongst the stars, so Anderson gets an additional point for the Star Gate SG-1 series.

Whether proud or fearless, rugged or sophisticated, there is a special something that makes a man. And our task as a writer is to create such a character for our readers–and ourselves. And my apologies, I took the prompt literally, “romantic hero.” Heroines are a topic for another day, and an attitude shift.

If the topic intrigues you, visit the other authors in the challenge. The master list is at http://mfrw52week.blogspot.com/2017/05/week-19-mfrw-52-week-blog-challenge.html

~till next time, meet the men of the Dragshi Chronicles.  Helen

Journey to the stars and worlds of imagination: Plotter, Pantser, Explorer #mfrwauthor

Week 11 of the #MFRWAuthor 52-week Challenge

First stop on this week’s blog hop. The topic is “My writing process.” The answer, whatever works. No labels, no worries. Hope you’ll stop by and read the rest of the tale, then visit the other authors.

One of the first things I get asked when someone learns I am a published author is “Are you a plotter or a pantser?” To avoid the impassioned defense of whatever method the questioner uses or the inevitable proselytizing to change to their side, I’ve developed a response, “Yes.”

How do I justify being both a plotter or pantser? Or anti-plotter, discoverer, or whatever the latest process is.

Read the rest of it on Journey to the stars and worlds of imagination: Plotter, Pantser, Explorer

Right Thing to Do – Wednesday’s Words by Morgan Ashbury

Those who know me, know I don’t like to upset. I don’t talk politics outside of a few close friends (and never at the dinner table) and try to avoid controversy. But there is something I felt needed to be shared. It might be preaching to the choir, but downloading and sharing books that you haven’t paid for is THEFT. Morgan Ashbury explains legitimate ways to get “free books” and how when they’re stolen it hurts not only the authors who create the books (and their families), but readers as well. Authors are not rich like the fictional Richard Castle. If we give it to you for free, enjoy. If not? Well, read Morgan’s tale as she explains the right thing to do. Time to get off the soapbox and turn it over to Morgan who is far more eloquent.

From Morgan’s Wednesday’s Words of January 25, 2017  …Free stuff is a great resource, too, isn’t it? When you have the opportunity to snatch up free stuff, it’s a bonus. I like it myself. Some places where I go to shop have “rewards” programs, and there’s nothing better than buying that roast of beef at the grocery store, or filling your car’s gas tank, on your “points”. It really makes me feel as if I’ve ‘won’ for a change.

There is, however, one category of “free stuff” being offered on the Internet that is not free at all. In fact, it’s worse than these items not being free because they are, in truth, stolen property. And, since I am a published author, you may have guessed that one category is books….


Read the rest of the post here.
Wednesday’s Words by Morgan Ashbury: January 25, 2017