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Archive for October, 2022

Happy Halloween! Plus, Ghosts of Halloween Past (Pictures!)
Monday, October 31st, 2022

I hope the kids have fun and that you sneak pieces of their candy! I plan to!

Ghosts of Halloweens past…

When someone was the only kid (and did not want her picture taken!)…

All four being their creepy best…

All four plus a one at the cemetary!

This year, we’re down to two… *cries*

Despite the ample chest, she’s still a kid at heart! 🙂

And the biggest kid has been working on her makeup for tonight (the sad look is part of the “look” or so I’m told)…

Today’s Tarot + Open Contests and a Giveaway!
Sunday, October 30th, 2022

I’m not very good at reading cards. My daughter’s the one who can give great readings, but I like to pull a card now and then to see what’s in store for me. Today, I asked, How will this day go?, and I pulled the three of swords.

Without looking at the cheat sheet, I’m guessing I shouldn’t count on getting a ton of things done. So, I’ll keep this short, check the weather (it is cloudy!), and maybe have a cup of hot cocoa to bathe whatever psychic wounds are coming. 🙂

Open Contests

  1. Trying new things… (Contest)This one ends soon! Win an Amazon gift card!
  2. Candice LaBria: Candice’s Guide to Surviving the Holidays (Contest + Cocktail Recipe) This one ends soon! Win a FREE book!
  3. Fall Puzzle-Contest!This one ends soon! Win an Amazon gift card!
  4. Cameron Allie: Happy Halloween (Contest) — Win two FREE books!
  5. Gabbi Grey: What’s in a Cover? (Contest) — Win an Amazon gift card!
  6. Halloween movie recommendations, anyone? — Win an Amazon gift card!
  7. A Halloween Giveaway! And the Saturday Puzzle!This one ends soon! Everyone, get your FREE book now!
A Halloween Giveaway! And the Saturday Puzzle!
Saturday, October 29th, 2022

Halloween is one of my family’s favorite holidays. We love any excuse to dress up, and we always go all-out. Proof is in the photo I’m providing for the puzzle!

As a gift to you, I’m offering to give away the first in my Beaux Rêve Coven series (very appropriate for Halloween!). If you love witches and demons living their lives in a swampy bayou, you’re in for a treat. This offer won’t last long, so be sure to download your copy today! Feel free to share this giveaway with your friends!

Also, if you haven’t already subscribed to my blog, why not do so now? (See the subscriber block in the column on the left!) That way you won’t miss a contest or FREE read in the future, plus you’ll meet other authors you might not know. It’s always an adventure here!

This is the world inside my series…

In Jefferson Parish, deep in the bayou, is a place called Bonne Nuit. Off the beaten path, isolated by swamp and connected to the sea, there the Beaux Rêve Coven thrives. Five witches… Too many demons to count…

Happy Reading!

Once in a Blue Moon is FREE!

Once in a Blue Moon

Bryn Cavanaugh and her coven like that the community they live in is isolated thanks to a storm that destroyed the bridge between them and the outside world. Now the state wants the bridge rebuilt. When the construction crew checks into the inn, Bryn begins to suspect something about the crew’s boss isn’t quite…human.

Bridges are Ethan Thorne’s thing—after all, he’s a troll—so building a simple span over a remote canal in backwater Louisiana shouldn’t be this much of a problem. When he follows the pretty little innkeeper to a midnight rendezvous, he discovers why his crew keeps running in to trouble. Bryn and her coven are casting spells in the moonlight.

As a troll, Ethan feels the sting of his low place in demon hierarchy. But finding an unprotected coven of witches in the middle of the bayou could lead to all sorts of adventure. And it’s better to keep your enemies close…

Get your FREE READ here!

Saturday Puzzle

Solve the puzzle and then tell me the last time you dressed up for Halloween!

N.J. Walters: Magick is in the Air
Friday, October 28th, 2022

Samhain is just around the corner. This is the day when the veil between our world and that of spirit is the thinnest. The nights are long, and the days are short, giving us plenty of time to ponder if such things are real or imaginary.

Traditionally, Samhain is the celebration of the final harvest. It heralded the beginning of the darker times to come. Bonfires flared to drive back the dark. Turnips were carved and lit with candles to drive away evil spirits. (The Halloween jack-o-lantern has its roots there.) In some cultures, people donned masks in an attempt to appease the gods. (You can easily see where the idea of trick-or-treating came from.)

It is also the Celtic New Year. It’s also known as the Night of the Ancestors, a time to honor those who have passed. It’s a time of fresh starts and new beginnings.

No matter what you believe, you know that on October 31 boys and girls will don costumes, masks and makeup and run door-to-door with the familiar refrain of trick-or-treat. Tons of candy and chips and bars will be distributed, and much fun will be had by young and old alike. The smooth sides of pumpkins will be carved into myriad patterns and flicker with the light of a candle, casting a glow in windows and on doorsteps. Nowadays orange and purple lights may adorn the home, along with life-sized zombies and ghosts and ghouls of every kind. It’s all in fun.

But sometimes you can get a little more than you bargained for. That’s what happens to the characters in my Spells, Secrets, and Seductions series. It all begins with A Touch of Magick. Rhiannon Sparks is a witch, but she’s not a very good one. She has trouble casting the simplest of spells. When her two friends join her one evening for dinner, they decide to cast a spell to bring them a lover. During the spell, Rhiannon bungles the words and ends up asking for a love that is true instead. Who does she meet but sexy deputy Ryland Stone, who doesn’t believe in anything he can’t see or touch. It will either be a disaster, or a match made in heaven. Maybe even both. What it won’t be is dull.

Her friends have man trouble of their own in Dreams of Seduction and Love in Flames. After all, they were part of casting the spell, too.

Whether you believe in magick or not, there is no denying the magic of love, when two people come together for the first time. Powerful stuff. It’s what makes the world go round, what gives us our greatest joys and our most powerful heartbreak. I believe in love and happily ever after or I wouldn’t write romance.

May your Halloween be filled with fun and laughter and maybe even a hint of magick. Happy Halloween! Happy Samhain!

A Touch of Magick
Dreams of Seduction
Love in Flames

About the Author

N.J. Walters is a New York Times and USA Today bestselling author who has always been a voracious reader, and now she spends her days writing novels of her own. Vampires, werewolves, dragons, assassins, time-travelers, seductive handymen, and next-door neighbors with smoldering good looks—all vie for her attention. It’s a tough life, but someone’s got to live it.

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Halloween movie recommendations, anyone? (Contest)
Thursday, October 27th, 2022

UPDATE: The winner is…Chelsea K!

We have a full weekend before Halloween hits, and the kids are on pins and needles waiting for the day. Their mom and I figure we can spend one night this weekend watching something fun to get ready—so forget about horror movies, y’all!

We’ve already watched Hocus Pocus and the second movie. We couldn’t wait for this weekend to do that. So, what’s left?

Make your recommendations for a chance to win a $5 Amazon gift card! What’s something you like watching with the family on the holiday?

Gabbi Grey: What’s in a Cover? (Contest)
Wednesday, October 26th, 2022

UPDATE: The winner is…Wendy!

I’m always happy to contribute stories to charity anthologies.  I’ve done several this year with charities such as Ukraine Aid Groups, LGBTQ causes, and Ronald McDonald House.  All of my contributions have been gay romances, and I love adding that flavor to the books.  All have been instalove with guaranteed happy endings because that’s what I write.  What I want to read.  What I know will both vex readers and make them secretly smile.

After an anthology is removed from circulation, the proceeds are tallied, and the money is sent off to the various charities.  Then the rights revert back to the author to do whatever they choose.  I like to wait a bit of time and then release them so that people who happened to have missed the anthology can snag a copy.  To be clear, though, I always want readers to grab those anthologies, which are always great deals and can introduce them to new authors, and where the money goes to charity.

In the end, though, I like my stories to live on and find new readers.  The problem is the cover.  When the stories are in an anthology, the organizers provide amazing covers.  Life’s great.  When your rights revert, you need to put something on the front of it before sending it out into the world.  Now, I’m getting better at this problem.  I skulk around premade cover sites and occasionally pick up one (or five) for stories I think I’m going to write. Or, frankly, covers I just love.

I was shopping for another story when I came across a cover with two guys and a lighthouse.

I loved it and snapped it up a year ago.  When I came to write the short story for the Ukraine Charity anthology, I remembered that cover.  It still spoke to me, and so I was happy to write a story about it.  An interracial gay couple and a lighthouse.  My imagination took me to Canada’s west coast—to Tofino in particular.  I wrote an instalove, forced proximity, short story that I kind of loved.  I sent the story off to the anthology, promoted the hell out of it, and then—when the rights reverted—I looked at releasing the story by itself.

But as much as I loved the cover that had prompted the story, it didn’t fit with most of my other covers.  It’s loosely part of a series of books I’ve written about a small town in British Columbia, and all those covers have solo men.  I contacted the artist who had done the rest of the series and asked her to make one for me.  I gasped when I saw it. Not only had she found the perfect Isaac, but she’d found a photo of the real Tofino lighthouse for me.  I did a quick clean-up edit for the book, sent off the script to be produced in audio, and published the short story.

And there you have it—a long-winded story to explain how the genesis of the story was one cover, but how I wound up with something else.  To be clear—I LOVE both covers.  Inspiration is a funny thing, and some writers, like myself, take it from wherever we can find in.  Anyway, I hope you’ll snag Ben and Isaac’s very Canadian gay love short story.

After reading all that, I’d love to hear your take. Which cover do you prefer? Drop your comment in the chat for a chance to win a $5 Amazon GC to a random commentator.  There is no right answer—I’d just love to hear what you think!

And, as always, thank you Delilah for hosting me.

The Lightkeeper’s Love Affair


I just graduated. I should be out celebrating. Instead, a storm’s coming and I’ve got no to place to sleep except the backseat of my car. At least I have my beloved beagle with me, but seriously, how is this my life?


After a horrific week, I hate being unable to retreat to my island sanctuary. Perhaps sharing my hotel room with a stranger in distress and his dog will take my mind off things. Afterward, we’ll separate and never meet again. Right?

*A 10k lighthearted gay romance with forced proximity, a loner, a future school-teacher, and Buddy, the adorable beagle. This short story was originally published in the anthology Ukraine: Seeds of Love.

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About the Author

USA Today Bestselling author Gabbi Grey lives in beautiful British Columbia where her fur baby chin-poo keeps her safe from the nasty neighborhood squirrels. Working for the government by day, she spends her early mornings writing contemporary, gay, sweet, and dark erotic BDSM romances. While she firmly believes in happy endings, she also believes in making her characters suffer before finding their true love. She also writes m/f romances as Gabbi Black and Gabbi Powell.

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It’s almost NaNoWriMo time!
Tuesday, October 25th, 2022

And you ask, what the heck is NaNoWriMo? Well, you can follow the link or read on!

NaNoWriMo is an online challenge. Writers commit to writing 50,000 words from November 1 to November 30. I’ve participated nearly every year since 2005—not that I’ve made it to the end. Some years, life got in the way or my book was shorter than 50k words, and I didn’t want to start something else. The point is to show up and WRITE!

NaNo is huge now! And international. They sell T-shirts and coffee mugs and host in-person write-ins. They maintain a message board where you can sign up and converse with like-minded authors. I don’t do any of that. I already bought the winners’ T-shirt–now I have to earn it. I have my NaNoWriMo page ready for me to update my daily progress. I have “buddies” I like to check in with, but not much, because November is always scary busy for me.

If any of you writers are planning to “NaNo” this year, be sure to update or sign up to start your page then let me know your buddy name. You can nag me. I’ll try to nag you. That’s how it works.

NaNo provided the pretty graphic to share. Wish I’d doodled it!

Anyways, that’s all I’m talking about today. I have edits, edits, edits to work on. Yeah, three sets. My day is full.

Everyone, have a wonderful day. Find something that gives you joy. I hope to reward myself with a little painting tonight. Out here! ~DD