Linda Broday’s Highlights of 2015

I always enjoy looking back at the end of the year and measuring my progress. Each year needs to show how far I’ve come. If it doesn’t then I slept through it. No sleeping for me this time. Man, I was busy! But 2015 was a stellar year. For the first time in my life I had three new releases–all in my Bachelors of Battle Creek series. January started off with a bang with TEXAS MAIL ORDER BRIDE. The month of May saw TWICE A TEXAS BRIDE and December wound up the series with FOREVER HIS TEXAS BRIDE.

Bachelors of Battle Creek BANNER

I also did quite a bit of traveling. Put a lot of miles on my car and on my body too!

My trip to New York City lingers in my mind as one of the best places I’ve ever gone. I’d always yearned to see it just once before I died. And I did. I toured the Sourcebooks Publishing NY office, did a walking tour of the financial district, saw the Statue of Liberty and Ellis Island.

Statue of Libertysm

George WashingtonsmTimes Square at Nightsm

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Not all was related to my career. Our family had a family reunion in East Texas and that was fun. I won the Hula-Hoop competition. I beat out my little sister. My oldest daughter got married and my oldest granddaughter graduated from Texas Tech University Suma Cum Laude.

M&R

Melinda and Katie

 

I wound up the year back in Dallas at Richardson when I attended the annual Buns and Roses Literacy Event. So much fun.

My Christmas celebration was low-key. I dragged out my Charlie Brown tree that I’ve had forever and hung little cowboy boots and hats on it. Then I sat a bunch of little doggies wearing six shooters and deputy badges on their vests around it with my cowboy statue guarding everything.

Boot Tree

In between all the travel and book releases I enjoyed being with my friends. I have some of the best friendships ever made.

But now I’m ready to get back to work. I need to finish up book #2 of my Men of Legend series and get the third one written. I’m really loving this series that has the big feel of Bonanza about it. A father and his three sons live on a huge ranch called The Lone Star. Their last name is Legend. I think readers will love it. And I have to turn in a proposal for another series that will come after Men of Legend. One thing about it, writers never have much time to sit around twiddling their thumbs. Maybe that’s a good thing.

Wishing you all a very Happy New Year!

 

Are Writers Really Poets and Liars?

Linda2015Many of us in the writing profession take our imaginations for granted. I know I do. I’ve always had it and my thoughts are as much a part of me as the beat of my heart. Without imagination to dream up great scenarios, our stories would be as riveting as a plumber’s manual.

 

But what really is imagination? Where does it come from? Any thoughts?

 

Ambrose Bierce an editorialist/journalist and short story writer in the 1800s states, “Imagination, n. A warehouse of facts, with poet and liar in joint ownership.”

That certainly fits.  Writers take a kernel of thought and fabricate a story around it with engaging characters and make us believe it definitely could happen.

 

stack-of-booksDavid Hume, an 18th century Scottish philosopher, became enthralled with human mental activity. He concluded that impressions in our brains are copies of actual things we have seen, felt, heard or read about. According to him we have no original thoughts. For instance – a blind person may know the word blue but he cannot associate it with an image. Therefore, he has no thought of what the color looks like. Same with a deaf person in relation to sound. According to him our ideas are nothing more than copies of impressions.

 

What! I think that’s a bunch of malarkey. What about Jules Verne’s submarine in Twenty Thousand Leagues Under the Sea? Or his novel, Paris in the Twentieth Century where he describes subways, gas stations, a fax machine? What about any number of other authors who accurately portray things far before their time?

 

It makes me wonder about Divine inspiration. I think some ideas defy logic.

 

Dog ReadingHume did acknowledge that nothing is more free than the human imagination. “Our minds have the power to mix, compound, separate and divide all of our ideas into a variety of fiction and vision.” Now, there you go. I totally agree with that. We have untold avenues of creativity. I fear I’ve only tapped into a small portion of ideas that float around aimlessly in my gray matter, waiting for me to draft them into a story.

 

I don’t know about you, but all this thinking wears me out. I think I’ll relax and curl up with a generous portion of imagination in a good book.

 

On second thought, I think I’ll put some of those fat, juicy ideas to work. After all, they’re only soaking up gray matter.

 

I can lie with the best of them and make readers believe it can happen!

 

Do you have good imagination? What vivid worlds did you visit as a child? Ever have a make believe friend?

 

It’s only a short wait until FOREVER HIS TEXAS BRIDE (the third and final book of my Bachelors series) comes out on December 1st. If you haven’t read the first two of the series, you still have time. Start with book #1 TEXAS MAIL ORDER BRIDE. Click on the covers and they’ll take you to Amazon.

Mail Order Bride

Twice a Texas Bride

ForeverTexasBridemed

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

And if you’d like to receive my newsletter, you can register on the home page at http://lindabroday.com/. The link is top right.

Or you can drop me an email at linda (at) lindabroday (dot) com and I’ll add you.

What!! Clothes For Your Walls?

Linda Brodaypink flowersI love wallpaper. Always have. I still remember the flowered kind that covered the walls in the bedroom I shared with my little sister in the 1950s. The image on the right is similar to it.

Back then, everyone used wallpaper and it must not have been something only for the privileged because our parents didn’t have squat. That paper had to be awfully cheap and my mama and daddy pasted it on themselves.

To me wallpaper is like clothes for the walls.

Here are some that you’ve probably seen.

1800s wallpaper

vintage

Pink wallpaper

 

 

 

 

 

 

It can set a mood. Fun? Whimsical? Sassy? Daring? Elegant?

elegant wallpaper

pretty wallpaperwallpaper2

 

 

 

 

 

 

Bordello? Funeral parlor? The first sample is from Downton Abbey.

downton abbey wallpaper

red wallpaper

green

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

In Twice a Texas Bride, Rand Sinclair buys a rundown ranch. Everything needs tons of work and the house is no exception.

After he finds Callie Quinn hiding in one of his outbuildings in the dead of winter and hires her to cook for him, he talks her into sitting in the parlor with him. One night after a long cold day while relaxing by the fire, he asks her opinion about how to fix up the house.

gold wallpaperCallie tells him she had once gone into a fancy hotel in Kansas City and fell in love with the wallpaper in the lobby. It was gold and a very elegant design. Rand decides then and there that he’s going to put that in the parlor. If he gets the house fixed up real nice, maybe she’ll stay. Except for his brothers, everyone else always leaves.

I think this sample is closest to what she describes.

Now, what about you. Are you a wallpaper or paint person? Do you have any favorites of the above?

By the way, I’ve seen the cover for FOREVER HIS TEXAS BRIDE – the third book and final book in the Bachelors of Battle Creek – and you’re gonna love it. Keep watching for it. I don’t think you’ll be disappointed in the portrayal of Brett Liberty.

Mail Order BrideTwice a Texas Bride

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Twice a Texas Bride – Book Release and GIVEAWAY!

sceneryWhat price would you pay for love? Would you risk everything?

IT’S FINALLY HERE! Twice a Texas Bride is officially out.

Book two of the Bachelors of Battle Creek series features middle brother Rand Sinclair. I knew he had a powerful story to tell when I introduced him in Texas Mail Order Bride, but I didn’t know how fiercely he’d fight for the woman he loves. Or what he was willing to risk.

ONE CHANCE. ONE LOVE.

ONE OUTLAW WHO’S COMING FOR THEM.

Former saloon owner, Rand Sinclair, finally has his dream—land and a ranch. He knows two certainties—he’ll never fall in love again. Never Marry. Everyone in his life always walks out on him—from his parents to every woman he took a chance with and opened his heart to. No more pain and crushing disappointment. He’s closed his heart.

Twice a Texas BrideIn the dead of winter, he discovers a woman and six-year-old boy hiding in one of his outbuildings. They’re half-frozen and starving. He takes them into his home, feeds them and gets them warm. One look at Callie Quinn tells Rand she’s running from something or someone. He can’t send her back out in the cold. So he offers her a job cooking for him and the future ranch hands he intends to hire.

In the days and weeks that follow, he learns a killer outlaw is after her and the boy. Rand assures Callie that whoever wants to harm her will have to go through him—and that will be a mighty tough job.

While Rand fights his attraction for her and knows that he’s losing, the outlaw Nate Fleming finds them and demands the boy, saying he’ll let Callie live if they’ll hand him over. Rand pushes all his chips to the center of the table.

He risks everything…his name…his heart… his life for the woman who’s awakened a fierce hunger for love.

Locked in a desperate battle to rid themselves of the outlaw’s special brand of terror, he reaches deep inside for every weapon in his arsenal.

One of them will die. Who will it be?

I hope you’ll take this thrilling journey with me in this story of learning to trust again, of taking one more chance, of defeating the odds.

What would you do, or have done, for love? What would you risk? Would you wager everything you have?

To celebrate the release, I’m giving away five copies (your choice of print or ebook) of TWICE A TEXAS BRIDE!

Visit me at: www.LindaBroday.com (sign up for my newsletter)
On Facebook: www.facebook.com/linda.broday1
Facebook Author Page: http://www.facebook.com/lindabrodayauthor
On Twitter: http://twitter.com/lbroday

Fried Pie? Bet You Didn’t Know by Linda Broday

Linda B.1Pies have been around since Medieval times when they needed something to seal in the juices of cooking meat or fruit. Someone with cooking skills and an inventor’s mind developed dough and it was perfect.

But in the 1800s, some upstart, practical Americans came up with something truly ingenious–the FRIED PIE.

Early on, they were also called “hand pies” or “crab lanterns.”

Fried PieWhatever name they went by, they were enthusiastically received. They were portable, no mess and you held them in your hand. Didn’t need a fork or plate. Folks could pack them into saddlebags, lunch pails, take them on trains or out on the range.

First, for those who don’t know what they are, I should probably explain. Picture this– a circle of dough, a filling of either fruit or meat on one side, the other half folded over then crimped with a fork to seal the edges, after which they’re put into a fryer of hot grease.

Absolutely out of this world!

Mail Order BrideEven the health conscious can enjoy them….baked.

Some would argue that fried pies are a Southern treat, but hold up there, pardner!

Our 14th president, Franklin Pierce, who hailed from New Hampshire, craved fried pies and brought them with him to the White House. (1853-1857)

In Texas Mail Order Bride, my middle brother bachelor Rand Sinclair’s mother made them and Rand sold them out of his Lily of the West Saloon. Cooper Thorne with his notorious sweet tooth was a regular customer.

If you haven’t read Texas Mail Order Bride, you can purchase it online at Amazon, Barnes and Noble, ITunes and many other sites in either paperback or e-book.

And if you’ve already read it, you don’t have long to wait for book two, Rand’s story – TWICE A TEXAS BRIDE. It releases on May 5th! It’s available for preorder now.

My Question: Have you eaten a fried pie (or baked)? What do you think of them?

I’m giving Texas Mail Order Bride to two commenters so come on in!!

Next Month — Cover Reveal for TWICE A TEXAS BRIDE!!

* * * * *
Visit my website for more: www.LindaBroday.com
Like my page on Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/lindabrodayauthor
Follow me on Twitter: http://twitter.com/lbroday
And Pinterest: http://www.pinterest.com/lindabroday1/

Magic Happens Sometimes and a GIVEAWAY!

It’s FINALLY here! Today is the official release of TEXAS MAIL ORDER BRIDE and I’m giving away 4 copies–winners’ choice of either print or e-book!

LindaWhen dark-haired, gray-eyed Cooper Thorne sauntered onto the page with his swagger and dogged determination, I knew he was a special kind of hero. He was rough around the edges and filled with a gritty hardness that came from watching his father beat his mother to death when he was seven years old. He would require a very special woman with a lot of heart who could give as good as she got. Someone who challenged him at every turn.

Enter Delta Dandridge who learned the hard way that no one was going to look out for her. She was on her own. One feisty and tough lady! When she dug in her heels, you’d better watch out. I knew she would be a perfect match for Cooper.

Mail Order BrideI was thrilled when they arrived on my doorstep with baggage in hand.

Sparks fly from the moment they meet. He’s furious that she would think he sent for her. If he can find the person who played the joke, he’ll wring his neck. He’s a bachelor and will die a bachelor and that’s the way it is. Then for her to refuse to go back where she came…well, let’s say it makes Cooper mad enough to spit. Delta reminds him of everything he’s trying to forget.

The depth of Cooper’s loyalty and caring for the people in his life goes bone-deep. When a man suddenly shows up that he thought he killed, Cooper becomes a fearless fighter. He will protect those he loves to the bitter end. The stripes on his back prove that he may bend, but he will never break.

Magic happened in a big way. Maybe a lot had to do with the fact that Cooper had such a larger-than-life persona. Or maybe it was Delta’s fierce need to matter to someone and be accepted. When she saw the dying town and people of Battle Creek, Texas, she knew they needed her as much as she desperately needed them.

So when Cooper throws down the gauntlet by saying that he isn’t in a market for a wife and never will be, she simply has to make him eat his words.

Or die trying.

Whatever the magic ingredient was, the story all came together in a fantastic fashion and I’m very proud of it. It’s a story of love and hope and finding a way to trust again.

TEXAS MAIL ORDER BRIDE is the first book of my Bachelors of Battle Creek series. I hope you enjoy it and look for book two, TWICE A TEXAS BRIDE, in May 2015.

Have you ever captured the magic that sometimes happens when everything comes together be it in life, love or the pursuit of happiness?
Leave a comment to be entered in the drawing!

And finally, here’s a trailer just for you.

Handcuffs Through the Ages by Linda Broday

sceneryWhen it came to restraining outlaws and criminals, nothing was more useful than a trusty set of handcuffs. Lord knows the old west saw more than its share of the criminal element due to lawmen being few and far between.
The ratio was probably something like 1 to 500, especially in the less settled regions. Like Alaska.
This first image was what they would’ve had universally here in the U.S. back in those days.

Historical_Handcuffs-5

Some of these would’ve been very tortuous. But then, criminals needed a deterrent of some sort and still do.

Historical_Handcuffs-1     Historical_Handcuffs-3Historical_Handcuffs-2

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

These were downright barbaric. I pity anyone who had their wrists inserted into these. Oh my dear Lord!

Historical_Handcuffs-4Historical_Handcuffs-8Historical_Handcuffs-12

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

And this last pair looks really strange but they were extremely cruel. The length was made of intertwined wire or other stiff material. They were drawn tightly around the wrist, either one or both, and held by a man of the law. If the lawman wanted to inflict excruciating pain, he would twist until the wire cut into the lawbreaker’s flesh. Or he could yank.

Historical_Handcuffs-7

Then when they GOT you to the jail, things went from bad to worse.
As you can see punishment wasn’t something they took lightly back then. And yet, they had an abundance of crime. Almost the same as it is today. Our prisons are full.

What is your favorite lawman or outlaw in a book or on the screen?

TEXAS MAIL ORDER BRIDE is available for preorder from Amazon.
Just click on the bookcover.Mail Order Bride