Friday, September 16, 2016

Guest Post & Giveaway ~ VICTORIA AT SEA by M. Kate Quinn


Victoria at Sea
by: M. Kate Quinn
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Release Date: August 3, 2016
Publisher: Soul Mate Publishing


Why has no place in what the heart knows for sure.

On the eve of their wedding Victoria Gliden and fiancĂ© Owen Walker call it quits. He accuses her of not being able to get over her deadbeat father’s vanishing act when she was a child and she and her cold feet run and don’t look back.

An interior designer, Victoria, has an important meeting on Cancun that could garner her a promotion and the plan was to incorporate her presentation with the honeymoon cruise that’s journeying to the island. Since she’s sure Owen is on his way to Portland to escape the aftermath of their ruined wedding, Victoria takes the honeymoon cruise anyway. Only Owen has the same idea and they’re stuck with each other for six days, five nights.

Tony Gliden, Victoria’s father, dies in a freak accident and is sent back to earth disguised as a crotchety old man with the mission to convince his daughter to believe in love. So, he, too boards the ship.

At sea, destiny takes a detour when Victoria befriends the quirky old man with kind eyes and together they join forces with a quartet of unabashed women in their fifties who drink pink martinis and flirt with the wait staff but are wiser than they look. While trying to dodge Owen, Victoria’s new acquaintances help her face old wounds and confront new fears.

Most of all, Victoria and Owen both realize it all boils down to one word—why?

By journey’s end will two broken hearts get their answer?


Words spilled from Owen’s lips before he had the chance to think. “I don’t know, Vic, maybe on some level I was meant to be here on this ship.”

She didn’t respond, kept her tooth locked down on that lip. But, her eyes were windows to some distant place he longed for. So, he and his glass of vodka let more words tumble free. “Sometimes I still can’t believe you really did this.” He gulped his drink in an effort to shut himself up, but it was fuel to his fire. “That you did this to us.”

“Don’t.” Victoria grabbed the fancy clutch that she’d squeezed into a misshapen blob of sparkly fabric.

“You know what?” He couldn’t stop and suddenly he didn’t want to. “It’s just too bad you’re so ridiculously afraid of veering off that rigid path you’ve carved out for yourself. That’s got to be a tough trek, Victoria. You must be exhausted.”

She stood up from the bar stool, chin held high, eyes swimming.

“You’re leaving.” It wasn’t a question. Owen knew the answer too well.

“Um, yes, I uh, promised my friends that I’d meet them.”

“Well, I guess I’ll see you back at the suite then, huh?” Pent-up energy raced around in him banishing every urge he had to stroke her hair, pull her to him, make them right again. His tone was caustic and it felt good and lousy both.

For each millisecond that he held her gaze, Victoria squirmed, her hands wringing that now pretty ugly evening bag, that tooth all but drawing blood as it pressed the pink flesh of her lower lip. She broke the stare and darted away as though she were being chased.

Owen’s heart squeezed like a fist had wrapped itself around the muscle. A tear pricked his eye. Victoria could run all she wanted, but for the first time in almost two days something finally made sense. She loves me.


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Writing and Weight Watchers – The Same Three Points of Wisdom


Okay, it sounds hokey, maybe, but hear me out.  When I decided that I was going to give this writing thing a real try, I did what I’ve come to call The Magic Three. Here they are:

Surround yourself with those “in the know.”
I joined New Jersey Romance Writers.  It was 2006 and I had about three chapters of a first manuscript.  I remember on that Saturday that I was going to drive to Jamesburg, NJ, to attend that first meeting on a cold day in January, I panicked.  I tried telling my husband that my head hurt and my stomach ached and I just couldn’t go.  A wise man, he said he was onto me and that he knew I’d kick myself if I didn’t attend the meeting.  So, I went and sat in the back of the room thinking “What the heck am I doing here with all these people that know what they’re doing?”  But, I was there and I learned from what they had to say and I kept attending meetings and learning more and here I am ten years later with the release of my sixth novel.

Be a student.
Since immersing myself in the quest to become a published author, I became a sponge.  I attend any and all workshops available.  When possible, I go to conferences, absorb the knowledge offered there.  I bring the same notebook with me to take notes at all the workshops so that I have all that good info in one place.  And when that notebook is filled, I buy another one and fill that, too.

I subscribe to writers’ periodicals and read the Romance Writers Report that comes out each month cover-to-cover.  And, I read, read, read, all kinds of novels.  I read in my genre, contemporary romance, but I read outside that genre, as well.

Act as If:
Nobody, not the universe, not your family and friends, not a soul will regard you as a writer unless you act like one.  Embrace the role.  When people ask you what you do try not to choke on the words, “I’m a writer.”  Say them, believe them, be them.  And, what do writers do?  They write.  Put your butt in the chair and create.  It’s what you do, it’s who you are.

So how does this apply to Weight Watchers?  Here’s how:
I decided I needed to lose weight so I joined Weight Watchers and attended meetings.  (Surrounding yourself with those in the know.)

I listened to the success stories, wrote down recipes, learned more about nutrition and how ten points of Doritos is not the same as ten points of grilled chicken.  (Be a student.)

I told people I was on the program.  When out to dinner I didn’t care if other people were devouring the breadbasket or ordering anything with “Alfredo” in its name, I embraced my program, owned it.  (Act as if.)

As of this writing I am currently eight pounds away from my goal.  So, yay for that.

Try The Magic Three and see!


Born to a feisty Italian mother and a gentle blue-eyed Irishman, I was given the name “Marykate,” inspired by Maureen O’Hara’s character in the movie, The Quiet Man, an old-time favorite love story that co-starred John Wayne. With a grandmother Catherine and an Aunt Mary the name was an obvious choice.
  
I've been writing stories all my life. There's an old Macy’s box in my attic filled with my writings from childhood, now smudgy-looking pages produced on my portable Olivetti Underwood typewriter, an eighth-grade gift from my Grandmother Catherine.
  
I am a recent First Place winner of a short story contest sponsored by Reader’s Digest Magazine and write a column entitled “Boomer Humor” that appears monthly in my neighborhood newspaper.
  
My husband and I are our own love story. We have a slap-happy middle-aged second marriage with a combined total of six grown children, one delightful granddaughter, another precious little baby on the way and one ridiculously spoiled, amazingly handsome cat named Sammy.


Places to find M. Kate Quinn:


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12 comments:

  1. congrats on the tour and thanks for the chance to win :)

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  2. Thank you for the guest post. I appreciate all the advice and insight into the writing process. Wish everyone a happy and healthy weekend! :)

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  3. Oh this sounds like such an amazing and inspirational book! I cannot wait to read and see what happens with Victoria and Owen stuck together for the cruise...and if her returning father's mission on earth...can make a difference in their lives!

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  4. Great post, sounds like a book I'm going to enjoy reading. Thanks for sharing :)

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  5. I really enjoyed reading the entire post, thank you!

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  6. Enjoyed the excerpt and post. Thanks for the giveaway chance.

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  7. This really is a story about second chances! The father-daughter relationship really does set the foundation of all future relations with men for a woman, so this story had real deep meaning!

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    Replies
    1. Thank you so much for your feedback.

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