Rumor Has It Wednesdays

I hear the Smoky Mountain Romance Writers are holding a writing contest. Here are the guidelines.

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*** Permission to forward granted and appreciated ***

The 2013 SMRW Laurie Contest Is Officially Open for Entries


Sponsor: Smoky Mountain Romance Writers, Knoxville, TN

Web Page: Entry forms, rules, guidelines, etc

Fee $25.00 per entry*

Deadline February 14, 2013

Entry Information:

  • Open to unpublished authors or authors who have not signed a contract within the past three years.**
  • Electronic Only.
  • First twenty-five pages of unpublished novel-length romance(40,000 plus),
  • No synopsis. You may include a single-page blurb or set-up of your book.
  • First round judges include published authors/trained judges.
  • Top three finalists in each category will have their entries judged by acquiring editors from the top romance houses. Check for our the list of our smokin’ final round judges.
  • Winners will be announced at Romfest 2013 in Gatilinburg, TN, June 19-21, 2013
  • For more information, rules and guidelines, visit or e-mail


*  SMRW members receive one free entry.

**SMRW does not police each entry. Entrants sign a disclaimer and are on the honor system to abide by it.


Recipe Tuesday

Sunday is Super Bowl Sunday so that means watching football and eating lots of yummy snack foods — that is if you like that sort of thing. So if you do then here is an easy treat that is sure to be a crowd pleaser.

Sausage Balls


  • 1 lb. ground pork sausage (any brand, any heat level)
  • 1 lb. shredded cheddar cheese
  • 2 cups Bisquick baking mix

Preheat oven to 350°.

In a mixing bowl combine all three ingredients, stirring until blended. Form into bite size balls and place on a non-greased baking sheet.  Bake 20-25 minutes until golden brown and the sausage is cooked through. Serve.  Uneaten portions can be stored in air-tight container or frozen and reheated for 10 minutes.

Warmer days ahead?

We’ve been in the freezing temps for several days now, but it looks like we are headed for warmer days. We’re now above freezing and in the low 40s with a forecast of reaching the low 50s today. It is almost noon so I do not know if we will make it today, but the promise of possibly getting there puts a smile on my face. It is overcast again today so this may be keeping us in the 40s. If the sun would only peak through the clouds.

I’m anxious to see what tomorrow will bring!

Sunday Sundaes

Today is my mother’s birthday. It started off like any other Sunday morning. We got up, got dressed, and headed to church with my parents. We carpool to save on parking space since it is limited. But one street over my mom gasps, “There’s a man in the ditch,” and my dad slams on the breaks.  He puts the van in reverse and we back up. Sure enough there is an elderly man lying in the ditch. It looked like he’d been out walking and fell. His face was scratched and cut up, he’s bleeding and the knees of his pants are cut and torn.

So we pile out of the van and help the man up. He’s talking and telling us he lives down the road a piece. My parents decide to give him a ride to his home because it is terribly cold out and he doesn’t have a coat on.  We head off again, but he doesn’t live at the houses up the road. He says he lives on Spring Street, but there isn’t a Spring street off the road we are on. So we turn into a subdivision and begin searching for a Spring Street. There isn’t one. We go all the way through to the new phase of this subdivision that ends up on a different road and so we loop back to where we found him.  While my dad is driving, I pull out my smart phone and do a quick GPS search for Spring Street, but find the closest one is clear across the city in the West part of town. There is no way this old man walked in the cold, without his coat from there to where we are. My mom starts asking him questions to find out if maybe he is visiting family. He gives us a name of a woman he lives near, but he can’t tell us where she lives. So we did the next thing we could think of. We called 911 thinking the police would be able to locate his family since he may have hit his head and wasn’t thinking straight.  The 911 operator asks him a few questions and wants to know if he has identification on him. He gives her his name and pulls out his wallet, but there is no identification in it. I’m beginning to wonder if he was out walking when he fell or if someone had abducted him, robbed him, and threw him out of the car. Overactive writers imagination kicking in? You never know.

By this time a white station wagon has pulled up to our van and we could tell the woman recognized the man. I’m on the phone with 911 again, they called me back to get more info on the man. The woman was so grateful we had come upon him. She said this isn’t the first time he’s gotten away from them, but it had been about four years since he did it. They have an alarm on the door, but his sister whom he is living with, must have slept through the noise.  We told her he said he lived on Spring Street and she said he did, but that was when he lived in North Carolina and that he had been talking about going home a lot lately and I guess that is where he was going, back to North Carolina (he was headed in the right direction, by the way). The woman who came to find him said she was going to take him to the hospital and have him checked out even though he kept telling us he didn’t need an ambulance.

I’m glad we came along when we did and were able to help. All I can say is bless his heart and the people he lives with who are his care givers. My grandmother had dementia before she died, but she never tried to run away. She would forget she’d eat and want to eat again and again. I’ve heard others who forget they are hungry so they don’t eat and end up starving themselves.

We finally made it to church after we went back home for my dad to change shirts. He’d gotten blood down the front of it when he was helping the old man up. He decided to stay home (he has a thing about going in late to anything), so we went on without him. What a day!  I know it is a birthday my mom won’t forget. She laughed and said it made her think of what she had to look forward to as she gets older.

Play Date Saturday

Foggy morning as the earth began to warm from underneath the ice, remnant of yesterday’s ice storm. Pieces of ice fell from tree limbs and telephone lines. Water dripped off of icicles as they melted. By noon the temperature had reached above freezing and was in the 40s. The sun was shining giving a false warmth to the day. Even steam was rolling off the road. It was interesting to watch.

I ran to the mall with my mom to do a little shopping this afternoon. It was very crowded. People getting out after the ice storm. I hope you had a good day.


Random Thought Friday

I was notified today that my rights to Through the Garden Gate Anthology will revert back to me. That means the paperback version will no longer be available in print, but you can still get the electronic copy of the individual stories from The Wild Rose Press. First time I’ve had my rights reverted back to me.

Ice. Icy rain. Sleet. More ice. Much more ice. Chilling temperatures. That is how to describe today.

Stay home and be safe. That is what you should do on a day like today.

Write. Write beautiful passages.

My Cupcake, My Love by Carolynn Carey is free today. Get it on Amazon!

What Are You Reading Thursday

My Cupcake, My Love

cupcakeBriana Galen is perfectly content operating her bakery in her hometown of Cedar Hollow near the Great Smoky Mountains. She’s content, that is, until famous novelist Devin Morris moves back to town with his six-year-old daughter. Devin seems determined to think the worst of Bri, even accusing her of canceling her cupcake decorating class for children just to spite him.

Devin’s move back to the mountains from New York City was designed to comfort his daughter Kaitlin, whose mother gave up custody of her when she fled to Europe with her lover. The last thing Devin wants is to become involved with another self-centered female, and Briana Galen appears to be just that. But if she thinks he’ll let her cancel that cupcake decorating class just because she’s busy, she’s got another think coming.

At the same time, who could have guessed that his volunteering to supply Valentine-themed cupcake decorations for Bri’s class would leave him with his own heart pierced by Cupid’s arrow? Now he can only hope that Cupid has Bri in his sights too.

I mentioned last week that I had the chance to read an advanced copy of this novella. This week it is now available and will be free on Amazon Friday and Saturday.  I truly enjoyed reading this story. Bri and Devin were wonderful characters to get to know and spend a few weeks in their lives. I know you will enjoy reading about them too.