Monday, December 31, 2007

Last Year's Resolutions -- How'd I Do?

Just for fun, I thought I'd take a peek at my resolutions from last year and see how I did. Ha! I crack myself up...

1. Write every day. May have to participate in Club 100 just to kick start the habit again.
Nope. Got an unexpected, new day job in January that killed my writing schedule. Love the job, hate the lack of writing time.
2. Write at least two new manuscripts in 2007.
Wrote one, edited two for publication.
3. Sell at least two manuscripts in 2007.
4. Start up the great agent safari once again.
5. Turn my website over to someone who knows what they're doing. I love fiddling with my site but it's time to let the professionals take over!
Uhhh...obviously, I have control issues. Nope.
6. Work out, for real, three times a week minimum. No more "lowest setting on the recumbent bike so I can read" fake-outs.
:: whistles, twiddles thumbs, looks off innocently into the distance... ::
7. In the same vein, actually WIN the Wellness Challenge in at least one category this year. I'm tired of missing first place by two or three points. I'm in it for the COIN, baby!
Second again. Sigh.
8. Find and destroy the cobwebs before DH can point them out.
(Better not let him see this list...)
9. Continue Date Night at least once a month with DH.
Actually did pretty well with this one. Missed a couple, but not for lack of trying.
10. Start planning meals more than an hour in advance, and limit eating out to no more than once a week.
Dang! Did I actually write this one down? Better put it on this year's list.
11. Create a business and promo plan, and stick to it.
Kinda sorta, though I know I need a better one...
12. Keep up with birthdays and anniversaries.
Fairly good at this one.
13. Read more romance! (Okay, I'll fess up. I threw this one in there so I'd be sure to accomplish at least one goal this year.)
Aaaand I was right! :)

Now on to this year's list. I'll keep it simple:
1. Write more frequently.
2. Finish at least two books.
3. Sell at least two books.
4. Improve healthy living -- exercise more, eat right.
5. Be better about participating on lists, blogs, etc.
6. Read more romance! (I think I'll keep this one on my list every year. It's so nice to know I'll actually reach one of my goals!)

How about you? Any resolutions?


Sunday, December 30, 2007

Save Big at MBaM!

Did you miss picking up any Samhain titles this year? Is there something you've been waiting to read? Now's the time to head over to My Bookstore and More to grab some great reads. This week only (which I think means before Tuesday), every e-book is 15% off. If you haven't purchased a copy of Home For Christmas yet, it's now only $2.13!

I just stocked up on some books I'd been meaning to buy for a while, so I'm ready for long, rainy January days. How about you?

Saturday, December 29, 2007

Done, Done, Done, Done

It's done.

I finished my book last night, at about 1:30 am (does that make it this morning? I don't think I've gone to bed before 2 am since Christmas Eve, so I really can't tell anymore). Typed the last line, saved it to my thumb drive, loaded it on the computer that's hooked to the Internet, and sent it off to my beta reader.

Now I'm just waiting for the response so I can fix any glaring errors before sending it to my lovely, understanding, patient editor. Did I mention patient?

So I'm actually surfing the net tonight, polishing up an old article I forgot to send to the family magazine I write for from time to time (it's a 'how to travel with kids' article, and if it's not sent in before the end of the year, I can't write off the trip on my taxes), enjoying a nice glass of Gewurztraminer, and thinking about going to bed before midnight.

Ah, bliss!

And speaking of bliss, the Powers that Be finally posted my newest cover over on the Samhain Coming Soon pages, and I'm absolutely delighted to be able to share it! Isn't it yummy?
This is the follow-on book to Lessons In Love, and it's scheduled for release on February 26.

Hope everyone is having a nice, relaxing, stress-free evening.

Friday, December 28, 2007


My apologies to all everyone on the west coast of the US tonight. If you happened to sustain hearing loss from my unbridled squealing, it was certainly unintentional.

But I just had to squeeee. One of my best buds, and a fabulous writer, called to tell me she'd sold her first book to Samhain!

Yay, M!

So, I can't tell you the name of the book or when it's coming out or even what name she'll be publishing under. At least not yet, until everything is nailed down. But I can tell you I've read the manuscript, and it totally rocks, and I'm just counting down the days until it's out.

Anyway, I'll be back in a day or so once I finish this latest book (only 6K left to go! Whew!), with more fun news (and hopefully more deets on the sale). Hope everyone had an excellent holiday season, and that you have fun stuff to look forward to this weekend!

Monday, December 24, 2007


Sorry, guys. Holiday stuff and a looming deadline kept me off the Internet for the most part until now. But the cookies are baked, the presents are wrapped, and the book is almost done (yay! My editor will be so pleased!), so without further ado...

The winners of the Home For Christmas blog party!

1. Winner of a download of Home For Christmas:

NJ Walters!

2. Winner of a Christmas ornament, stocking and assorted goodies:


3. Winner of a handcrafted fabric mini purse and butterfly keychain:


4. Winner of an autographed copy of The Perfect Gift:


Congratulations to all! E-mail me either your mailing address or your preferred e-book format, and I'll get those posted ASAP.

And happy holidays, everyone!

Tuesday, December 18, 2007

Book BIN, um, Wednesday...

Yes, I'm late with this post. (Okay, it's still Tuesday here, but not for long, and by the time anyone else reads it I'm sure it'll be Wednesday...) We've been running hither and yon for piano recitals, school concerts, holiday pageants, and on and on and on...

But without further ado (what? No ado? Horrors!), my Book BIN recommendation for this week is:

Do you really have to ask? :)

Home For Christmas is on sale now!

And when I say on sale, I really mean ON SALE. As in, only $2.25. Isn't that great?

Perfect price for a pre-Christmas stocking stuffer, wouldn't you say?

And thanks to everyone for hanging out with me during my pre-release Blog Party. I had fun, and hope you did too!

One more question for the fun of it -- one more chance to comment and enter to win! I'll post the winners of the contest either later today or Thursday.

So here it is -- what one present would you love to receive this holiday season?

Monday, December 17, 2007

Blog Party -- Excerpt #2 (it's almost here!)

Just a few short hours until Home For Christmas goes on sale! To fill those hours, here's another excerpt to enjoy. It's from a bit earlier in the book.

Home For Christmas

c 2007 Kate Davies

Samhain Publishing

Ethan hefted the evergreen wreath out of the back of the SUV, grimacing a little at the unexpected weight. The guy at the tree lot had tossed it in there like it was made of tissue paper. How in the heck was this monstrosity supposed to stay put? He’d lay even money that it would fall right off the door hanger from the sheer bulk of it.
Oh, well. It still looked nice, and Sophia would be able to figure out what to do with it. She was a genius at those things.
A smile softened the line of his mouth. He could just see her, soft wavy brown hair bundled up on the top of her head, little bits of it curling down around her face like she’d completely forgotten it was up there. Her hazel eyes would light up with surprise when she saw the wreath, and she’d say—
“What are you doing here?”
Ethan looked up. He wasn’t even to the porch yet, still wrestling the decoration up her walkway, but she’d already opened the door.
“Merry Christmas.” He heaved the wreath another foot or two. “Brought you an early present.”
“Uh, thank you.” Her eyes darted from side to side. “You really shouldn’t have.”
Concentrating on the wreath, Ethan almost missed the tone of her voice. She sounded—upset. Distracted. Not at all like the sweet, positive Sophia he knew.
“You okay?” Finally at the porch, he leaned the wreath against the railing and climbed the steps. He brushed a curl away from her face. “You don’t seem like yourself.”
“I, uh—”
A thud resounded from inside the door, and Sophia’s daughter poked her head out. “That’s the last of them—hey!” She rushed over to give him a hug. “I’m so glad you’re here!”
“Thanks,” he said. “What are you doing here? I thought you were on your way across state with lover boy.”
She smacked him on the shoulder, just as she did every time he called Robert that. “We’re heading out in a few minutes. In fact, I have to get going. Maybe you can talk some sense into Mom.”
“What?” His head swiveled from daughter to mother. “What are you talking about?”
Samantha glared at her mother. “You haven’t told him yet?”
“Samantha,” Sophia said, shooting her a look that was full of warning.
Sam let out a huge gust of a sigh, then gave her mom a hug. “Can’t say I didn’t try.”
“I love you. Be safe,” Sophia said.
“You too,” Samantha said, which made no sense. How much trouble could Sophia get into here at home?
Especially when he’d be keeping an eye on things, like always?
Sam gave him another hug, pausing long enough to whisper “call my cell” in his ear when Sophia wasn’t looking. Then she was off the porch and in her car before he could ask her why the hell she was acting like a double agent.
Shaking his head, he turned back to Sophia. “Tell me what?”
“Hmm?” She was fussing with the red velvet bow at the top of the wreath.
“Sophia.” He waited until she looked up. “Samantha asked if you’d told me yet. Told me what?”
“Oh, nothing.” She bit her lip. Then, squaring her shoulders, she said, “No, that’s not true. Samantha is mad at me for making some plans for the holidays.”
“She’s going to be gone, anyway. Why would she have any say in it?”
“Exactly what I said!” Sophia smiled at him. “I knew you’d understand.”
She’d been smiling at him for over a decade now, since he and Dan started their property management business together. It was only in the last six months or so that it had started knocking him on his ass.
Even now, his breath hitched when she turned the full wattage of her smile on him.
He cleared his throat. “So what kind of plans?”
“Oh, you know.” She waved one hand, as if that explained everything. “Just wanted to do something…different this year.”
Ethan nodded. Last Christmas had been hellish for all concerned.
“So I—”
A honking horn interrupted whatever she was going to say. A flash of—was it relief?—washed across Sophia’s face.
“There’s my ride!”
Ethan turned, confused, to see the airport courtesy van idling in the driveway behind his SUV. “Your ride?”
By the time he looked back, Sophia was already locking the front door, several suitcases piled around her feet. “With the new check-in procedures, I want to be sure to get there in plenty of time.”
“Check in? Get where? Where are you going?”
She hesitated. “On an adventure,” she said finally.
“And adven— Sophia, have you lost your mind?”
“Probably,” she said, a dimple appearing in her left cheek. “Don’t worry. I’ll tell you all about it when I get back.”
“Get back from where?” He couldn’t seem to do much more than repeat what she’d just said, but damned if she hadn’t completely pulled the rug out from under him. “What about Christmas?”
Her gaze softened and she placed one gloved hand on his cheek. “I’m sorry to do this in this way,” she said. “I know it’s not very fair of me.”
The driver beeped his horn again. Didn’t the jerk understand this was important?
Sophia was busy gathering her suitcases, though it was obvious she wouldn’t be able to carry all of them in one trip. With a mounting sense of dread, Ethan picked up the last two and followed her to the van.
The driver got out to stow the bags. Sophia started to climb into the van, but Ethan stopped her with a hand on her arm.
“Can’t you at least tell me where you’re going?”
She shook her head, tears shining in her eyes. “I’m sorry, I can’t. This is something I have to do on my own.”
Ethan just stared at her. It was as if she’d turned into a stranger overnight. Who was this woman, and what had she done with his Sophia?
She leaned down and kissed him on the cheek. “I’ll explain everything when I get back.” Then she vanished into the van.
He watched in disbelief as the van pulled out of the driveway and trundled down the road. His Sophia. Who was he kidding? She was as much a mystery to him now as she’d ever been.
Probably more.
Eyes narrowed, he grabbed his cell phone and dialed Samantha.
She answered in one ring.
“Okay, kiddo, I think it’s time someone told me what the hell is going on.”

Blog Party -- Happy Anniversary, Sweetie!

Not a long post to start the day -- just a shout-out to my DH on our 13th wedding anniversary. So glad we're on this journey together. Love you!

Saturday, December 15, 2007

Blog Party -- Never Seen Before Excerpt!

Since you guys have been great about stopping by and posting during my blog party, I thought I'd put up an excerpt that hasn't been posted ANYWHERE yet. Enjoy!

e-book, December 18, Samhain Publishing
Now in print in THE PERFECT GIFT anthology
(c) 2007 Kate Davies

She still couldn’t believe he was here, on board the ship. Her first glimpse of him had told her more about her own feelings than she had acknowledged up until that point. Because as much as she pretended to be angry with him for intruding on her act of independence, the first emotion she’d felt when she saw him was pure, unadulterated relief.

Followed very closely by a hefty dose of lust.
Sophia pressed a hand to her middle, trying to hold back the attack of nerves that threatened to overtake her. She was in her mid-forties, for heaven’s sake. She was a widow with a grown

daughter. She wasn’t supposed to be panting after good old reliable Ethan.

But “supposed to” had all but disappeared from her vocabulary over the past few weeks as she’d planned her trip. She’d made a conscious choice to grab hold of what she wanted, to make it happen.

What she wanted, she had to admit, was Ethan. The fact that he was here was a hint that he might not object to being grabbed.

What if she was misreading the situation? What if he really was only here out of some misplaced sense of obligation to her—or, worse, to her late husband?

Oh, God, if he was here to keep an eye on her because he felt it was what Dan would have wanted…

No. She wouldn’t think like that. She couldn’t.

A knock at the door pulled her attention away from the swirling turmoil of her thoughts. “Just a minute,” she called, picking her wrap up from the bed where she’d discarded it. Then she opened the door.

Ethan was standing there, looking at her with a combination of intensity and something she couldn’t quite name. “You look beautiful.”

“So do you,” she replied, then laughed. “Or, well, handsome.”

“Thanks.” He smiled. “Either works for me.”

He wore a long-sleeved, cranberry-colored knit shirt with black slacks, maybe a bit too warm for the humid night, but the combination of casual and pulled together just looked right on him. His hair, still a little damp from the shower, curled a bit at the temples. A rush of desire, so strong she could almost touch it, washed through her.

He smiled, a slow, lazy grin that warmed her from the inside out. “Ready to go?”

“Sure,” she said, slipping past him through the doorway. It was a tight fit, and her shoulder brushed against his chest as she exited the room.

Even that little touch made her a bit weak in the knees, and he put a hand on her elbow to steady her. “I’ve heard it takes a while to get your sea legs,” he murmured.

She smiled weakly and closed the door behind her. The seismic shift in their relationship was so big, she wasn’t sure if she’d ever find her balance again.

Friday, December 14, 2007

Blog Party -- Home For Christmas Blurb!

Home for Christmas is a bit of a departure for me -- set during the holidays, older hero and heroine, and taking place on a cruise ship. But all those elements add up to a story I really enjoyed writing, and hope you'll enjoy reading!

Here's the blurb for the book...

She left everything familiar behind – but love found her anyway.

Sophia is determined to spend Christmas on her own terms this year. Her daughter will be spending the holidays with her boyfriend's family, and Sophia has no intention of staying home alone with her memories.

She knows Ethan would be more than happy to keep her company. But he's her business partner – and her late husband's best friend. It's past time to stop leaning on him and learn to stand on her own two feet. A cruise to the Caribbean might be just the ticket to discovering who she is now, and what she really wants.

Ethan is stunned to discover that Sophia has decided to go on a cruise for Christmas – alone. He'd thought that something more was finally developing between the two of them. If she's ready to move on after the loss of her husband, he'll be damned if he lets her move on without him!

On the spur of the moment, Ethan books a stateroom, determined to prove to Sophia that what they have goes far beyond friendship. The romantic atmosphere of the cruise sparks a passion the two had only dreamed of before – but can their fledgling relationship survive beyond the vacation of a lifetime?

Warning, this title contains the following: explicit sex, graphic language (but don’t tell my mom).

Setting the story on a cruise ship was great fun--I got to dive into an enjoyable research topic, and do a little daydreaming at the same time. I've never been on a cruise, especially for Christmas, but I'd sure love to go sometime.

If you could spend the holidays anywhere in the world, where would you go?

Wednesday, December 12, 2007

Blog Party -- Thirteen Things About Home For Christmas!

Welcome to day two of the Kate Davies Home For Christmas Blog Party! In honor of Thursday Thirteen, here are thirteen things you may not know about Home for Christmas, my upcoming release from Samhain Publishing.

1. It's my first Christmas-themed story.
2. It's included in THE PERFECT GIFT, the 2007 Samhain holiday anthology.
3. It's one of the only books by Samhain to be released in print first, then e-book.
4. THE PERFECT GIFT has been on the Amazon top twenty romance anthologies bestsellers list since September.
5. My mom and her best friend gave me the original idea for the story, although I've changed it so much I doubt they'll recognize it now.
6. Ethan and Sophia are both a bit older than the typical romance hero and heroine -- and I adore them because of it.
7. I love the idea of going on a Christmas cruise, though I've never had the opportunity.
8. Home For Christmas is one of five stories in THE PERFECT GIFT -- and I'm not exaggerating when I say I love each one of the other stories.
9. The brilliant Anne Cain created the cover, which I absolutely adore. It rocks.
10. I'll be sharing a blurb and some excerpts over the next couple of days.
11. There's an interview on The Romance Studio that goes into a little more detail about the book. Stop by and check it out!
12. I'll be giving away some prizes at the end of the blog party, to celebrate the release of my new book. Every comment you post is an entry into the drawing. So stop by and post!
13. The e-book version will be available on December 18!

Blog Party -- Home For Christmas Week!

...And the Countdown begins!

In just one week, Home for Christmas will be available from Samhain Publishing. And to celebrate, I'm holding a week-long blog party. I hope you'll join me!

So what is this blog party? Well, it's a Christmas-themed celebration, with excerpts, behind-the-scenes facts about the book, recipes...and, of course, presents!

What can you do to win? Drop by my blog any time between now and December 18 and post a comment. Anyone who comments is entered in a drawing to win great prizes -- free books, e-books, holiday-themed gifties...whatever I feel like giving away. And the more you post, the more entries you receive!

So stop by, post a time or two, and you could win!

Monday, December 10, 2007

Book BIN Tuesday -- Gearing Up For The Holidays!

It's a mere two weeks until Christmas, and you know what that means --

Instead of focusing on a single book this week, I thought I'd recommend some of my favorites -- and ask for your suggestions in return.

I love holiday-themed romances. There's something about the combination that just tickles my fancy, whether it's a single title historical, a contemporary category, or an anthology with a little of everything.

Just a quick perusal of my keeper shelves turns up several books that fit the bill. There's Jingle Bell Rock, the first Brava anthology I ever read; It Came Upon A Midnight Clear, a category romance by Suzanne Brockmann now retitled and reissued as Hawken's Heart; Merry Christmas, Baby, a Brava anthology including stories by two of my favorite people, Lucy Monroe and Susanna Carr; The Greek's Christmas Baby, also by Lucy Monroe; and the list goes on and on.

(There's also a few copies of The Perfect Gift, the Christmas anthology I'm in. I kinda like that one, too. LOL)

So how about you? Do you like holiday romances? What are some of your favorites?


Check out that lovely progress meter on the right side of my blog. Almost 50%!

This was made possible by my darling husband, who drove all over the countryside and back this weekend so I could write in the car.

Why the car? Well, with school out most of the week due to flooding, my kids were home, and I lost a *lot* of writing time to refereeing, supervising, and just plain paying attention. Not to mention that these same kids like to spend time on the computer, too.

So I was getting a little panicky, what with a looming deadline and all, so we piled into the van, plugged in the portable DVD player and my laptop car adaptor power cord, and headed for the open road.

No internet to distract me, no kids clamoring to play on the computer--and I got several thousand words written, a couple of plot problems worked out, and I'm ready to roll with the rest of the book.

It's a somewhat complicated solution to a somewhat simple problem, but it worked. So thanks, honey!

Wednesday, December 05, 2007

Thursday Thirteen #35 -- Flood Edition

Not much to say this week, so I thought I'd let these pictures speak for me. (With a little commentary -- I *am* a writer, after all.) All these photos were taken after the devastating flooding in the Pacific Northwest this week.

Closed and guarded freeway on-ramp.

This is the most air rescues the Coast Guard has performed since Hurricane Katrina.

A fountain that's normally dry in December.

Note the speed limit sign.

No fastpitch this week!

A familiar sight.

And another one.

I hope you and yours are safe, warm, and dry.

Tuesday, December 04, 2007

I Take It Back.

Okay, can we rewind yesterday and delete my whining about the concert?

Because today I'm just so thankful to be in a warm, dry, non-flooded house, I can't believe I even worried about something so insignificant.

Oregon and Washington are absolutely DEVASTATED by the storm and flooding. I live in one of the hardest-hit areas, but we're lucky enough to be in a part of town that's above flood stage. I've spent a good portion of the day watching the news, mouth gaping open as I see people kayaking to the front door of a local store; wheelchair-bound residents being airlifted by Coast Guard helicopter in the middle of the night from the roof of a house; truckers stopped on the side of the interstate for what will likely be days because the main north-south route through the state is blocked by ten feet of water. A local park we like to go to is now almost completely underwater. (It's a little disconcerting to see "Do Not Enter/Wrong Way" signs nearly submerged.)

So. Priorities, here. Tonight, mine include giving my kids an extra hug, and sending up an extra prayer for my friends and neighbors who weren't nearly as lucky.

Monday, December 03, 2007


Sorry, no Book BIN Tuesday today. I'm too depressed.

See, we had tickets to Van Halen tonight. With David Lee Roth. The DH and I saw Van Halen a few years ago, with Sammy Hagar singing lead, and we were both looking forward to being able to compare the two shows. Plus, it's David Lee Roth! Singing Ain't Talkin' 'Bout Love! (Which is my favorite Van Halen song. Even when it's a bluegrass version. Couldn't find it on YouTube, but if you scroll down on the previous link, you can listen to a clip.)

So why am I not at the concert? Oh, record floods, hurricane force winds, school closures, the main highway through the state shut down for probably the next 36 hours...

Can't really say "the usual", can I? :)

Well, it's for the best. I would *not* have liked getting to the concert venue an hour and a half away from home and discovering I couldn't get back before tomorrow night. But boy, I hated eating those tickets. Sigh.

So how's your week starting out?

Sunday, December 02, 2007

A New Interview!

I'm buried by deadlines right now and will post when I can -- but I wanted to share a link to a new interview at The Romance Studio that went live this weekend. Find out more about Home for Christmas, my holiday story that comes out in e-format on December 18.