Tuesday, July 29, 2014

A Video Clip - And a Revelation

A friend who knew I loved the movie Frozen sent me this link, of the amazing Let it Go being recorded in twenty-five different languages. Cool. And fascinating. I'm not ashamed to admit that I watched the clip more than once. But other than lovely voices, what do these women have in common?


Watch their faces, how they go from intense to rapturous. At the uplifting part of the song, the women have similar expressions. Their appearances, clothes, and surroundings may change, but deep down, they're sharing an experience. And love or hate the song, imagine, while you're in your car belting out Let it Go, in many different lands, in many different dialects and languages, many different people may be doing the same.

Yes, we all have differences, but we all share similarities too. This video brought that home to me in a big way. I don't understand the women singing in Polish, Cantonese, or Thai, but I recognize the beauty in the words, the heartfelt way they are sung, and they have their own stories, lives, families...

Maybe we're not so different after all.

Rock 101, Past, Present, and Future

I grew up on a farm, and the delivery doctors must have rubber stamped "different" on my forehead the day I was born, for that's what I heard forever after. "You're...different," folks would say, lips slighted curled in what could only be labeled disgust. No one ever explained how I was different, or why that was a bad thing, but "different" hung over my head like a black cloud throughout my childhood. Whatever is was, I didn't want it.

I grew up listening mostly to the gospel and country music my family did, but when I was twelve, something amazing happened. Being poor, I never could have afforded to buy one, but I won a radio. Now it wasn't much by today's standards, it didn't have a clock, wouldn't play CDs (they weren't on the market yet) or cassettes (that weren't on the market yet) or even eight tracks (which WERE on the market). Where we lived in the middle of nowhere, I could only pick up a few stations, but the one to come in most clearly? Rock 101.

Suddenly the "different" in me found an outlet in songs that spoke to my individuality, and celebrated my "difference." At night I'd turn the volume low and keep listening even though I'd get in trouble if caught. That little radio provided my link to life outside the farm, and my morning started with a tiny childlike voice saying, "Good morning, Buddy Carr!" the morning DJ's trademark sign-in.

Elton John's Someone Saved My Life Tonight, spoke to my longing to be rescued from a dull life, and Tiny Dancer became my favorite song. Sorry Seems to Be the Hardest Word, said better than I ever could how bad rejection hurt.

From age twelve on up, Rock 101 was a touchstone in my life. I grew up, moved away, got married, had kids, got divorced... I threw out eight tracks in favor or cassettes, and later, CDs, but so many times, I tuned in to my favorite radio station, now a classic rock station, to hear the songs from my youth.

I left the state for many years, and when I came back, satellite, CD, and an iPOD put musical choices at my fingertips.

Then, just the other day, while switching CDs, what should I hear but the crackly call sign of my once favorite station! I tuned in and...lost myself in musical history. The commercials are something I can do without, but that moment felt like coming home. The song? Elton John's Goodbye, Yellow Brick Road.

Some things never change. And I'm glad that, after (mumble, mumble) years, Rock 101 is still there.I listen with my grandkids now. And in the future? Who knows?

And these day? I revel in my "difference". It's the best part of me. 

Sunday, July 27, 2014

Lovely Words for Highway Man (2nd Edition)

This weekend the newly released, extended version Highway Man received not one, but two five star (or marbles) ratings.

The first came for Cryselle at Cryselle's Bookshelf. Here's some of what she had to say:
  
"I read this in its first incarnation and loved it then, but in its new form we get about twice as much story and I think I love it about twice as much now."

Read entire review here:

The second review came from Lisa at The Novel Approach, who labeled it a "Small Gem". Lisa had this to say:

"In true Eden Winters style, Highway Man is a romantic interlude that strums a poignant tune on the heartstrings, then comes to an uplifting end, earning its small gems recommendation."
Read entire review here:

Maybe one day Killian and Mike will get a novel of their own. 


Killian Desmond’s dreams died in a flash of pain and the scream of twisted metal. He lost it all the night a tour bus sailed off a mountainside, sending his band—with his brother—to their deaths.

Killian is dead too, if the papers are to be believed, and living a half-life of odd jobs, rodeo rides and pick up gigs. The road that once meant freedom is now Killy’s exile. No strings, no ties, no names for the one-night stands.

Answering a tribute band’s ad thrusts him face to face with his past, and into the arms of the one man who just might understand.




Find Highway Man at Rocky Ridge Books


All Romance eBooks


Amazon


For those of you who are wondering, the story has nearly doubled in size since the first edition.


Saturday, July 26, 2014

Duet for .99 Cents?

If you've had your eye on a copy of Duet, now's the time to buy. Thanks to Dreamspinner Press's Christmas in July, today only it's marked down to .99 cents.

Like the Scottish Highlands? Hot guys in kilts. Love stories that span centuries? Then Duet may be the book for you. It's part historical, part contemporary, with a slight paranormal twist.

 http://www.dreamspinnerpress.com/store/product_info.php?products_id=3585

A conqueror’s decree can’t separate Aillil Callaghan from his Scottish heritage. He wears his clan’s forbidden plaid with pride, awaiting the day he becomes Laird, restores his family’s name, and fights to free Scotland from English tyranny. An Englishman in his home? Abomination! Yet the tutor his father engaged for Aillil’s younger brothers may have something to teach the Callaghan heir as well.

Violinist and scholar Malcolm Byerly fled Kent in fear, seeking nothing more than a quiet post, eager minds to teach, and for no one to learn his secrets. He didn’t count on his charges’ English-hating barbarian of an older brother, or on red-and-green tartan concealing a kindred soul. A shared love of music breaks down the barriers between two worlds.

Aillil’s father threatens their love, but a far more dangerous enemy tears them apart. They vanish into legend.

Two centuries later, concert violinist Billy Byerly arrives at Castle Callaghan—and feels strangely at home. Legends speak of a Lost Laird who haunts the fortress in wait of his lover’s return. Billy doesn’t believe in legends, ghosts, or love that outlasts life.

But the Lost Laird knows his own.


 ***

Pick up your copy today at Dreamspinner Press.

Thursday, July 24, 2014

Please Welcome Michael Rupured! Guest Post



 Good morning, y'all (evening, etcetera). Please welcome Michael Rupured to the blog, for a preview of his upcoming novel, Happy Independence Day, and a giveaway.
 Hi, Michael!
Thanks, Eden, for allowing me to show off the cover for my upcoming release from Dreamspinner Press here on your blog. By far, the most exciting part of the publishing process—at least for me—is seeing the cover for the first time. For my next novel, to be released August 20th, artist Christy Caughie created a gorgeous cover. To celebrate, I’m conducting a giveaway. Keep reading for details.
Terrence Bottom wants to change the world. A prelaw student at Columbia University majoring in political science, his interests range from opposing the draft and the war in Vietnam, to civil rights for gays, to anything to do with Cameron McKenzie. Terrence notices the rugged blond hanging around the Stonewall Inn, but the handsome man—and rumored Mafia hustler—rebuffs his smiles and winks.
Cameron McKenzie dropped out of college and left tiny Paris, Kentucky after the death of the grandmother who raised him, dreaming of an acting career on Broadway. Although he claims to be straight, he becomes a prostitute to make ends meet. Now the Mafia is using him to entrap men for extortion schemes, he is in way over his head, and he can’t see a way out—at least not a way that doesn’t involve a swim to the bottom of the Hudson in a pair of cement flippers.
Cameron is left with a choice: endanger both their lives by telling Terrence everything or walk away from the only man he ever loved. The Mafia hustler and the student activist want to find a way to stay together, but first they need to find a way to stay alive.
Preorder here:

 The Stonewall Inn on Christopher Street in Greenwich Village is the setting for much of the action in Happy Independence Day. What made the Stonewall Inn a magnet for homosexuals?
Despite a high cover charge ($1 during the week and $3 on weekends), pricey watered down drinks, and deplorable conditions, the Stonewall Inn was a popular gathering place for homosexuals. Why? As a private club, the Stonewall Inn was the first establishment in New York where homosexuals could dance together. Two dance floors catered to different crowds. The jukebox in the front room played mainstream hits and show tunes for the older set and the jukebox in the backroom played more R&B and soul for a younger, edgier crowd. Around the time of the 1969 uprising, the Stonewall Inn was believed to be the biggest and most popular gay bar in the United States.
GIVEAWAY!!!!
To give you a reason to visit the other blogs helping me celebrate my new cover, I’ve come up with a Giveaway and a quiz about the Stonewall Inn and the 1969 uprising that made it famous. Find the answers on the blogs participating in my cover reveal and giveaway (links below). Comment on my post on any of the participating blogs by midnight, July 31, 2014 for a chance to win a signed copy of the prequel, After Christmas Eve (U.S. residents only; ebook available for international winners—one winner per blog).
What is the Stonewall Inn?
What was the legal environment in 1969 for NYC homosexuals?
Who owned the Stonewall Inn?
What happened at the Stonewall Inn on the night of June 28, 1969 to cause the uprising?
Who/what started the Stonewall riots?
How long did the Stonewall Uprising last?
    Shira Anthony
     Chris Koehler
     Prism Book Alliance

Find out what Michael’s up to by visiting his web site (http://rupured.com), following him on Twitter (@crotchetyman), or by email (mrupured@gmail.com).

Sunday, July 20, 2014

Duet News!

I just discovered a rather lovely review for Duet at Boy Meet Boy Reviews. Reviewer SheReadsALot had this to say:

"Overall, an all encompassing love story that carries throughout the centuries" and "Definitely recommended."
 A conqueror’s decree can’t separate Aillil Callaghan from his Scottish heritage. He wears his clan’s forbidden plaid with pride, awaiting the day he becomes Laird, restores his family’s name, and fights to free Scotland from English tyranny. An Englishman in his home? Abomination! Yet the tutor his father engaged for Aillil’s younger brothers may have something to teach the Callaghan heir as well.

Violinist and scholar Malcolm Byerly fled Kent in fear, seeking nothing more than a quiet post, eager minds to teach, and for no one to learn his secrets. He didn’t count on his charges’ English-hating barbarian of an older brother, or on red-and-green tartan concealing a kindred soul. A shared love of music breaks down the barriers between two worlds.

Aillil’s father threatens their love, but a far more dangerous enemy tears them apart. They vanish into legend.

Two centuries later, concert violinist Billy Byerly arrives at Castle Callaghan—and feels strangely at home. Legends speak of a Lost Laird who haunts the fortress in wait of his lover’s return. Billy doesn’t believe in legends, ghosts, or love that outlasts life.

But the Lost Laird knows his own.


***

Looking for a historical/contemporary/Highlander/enemies to lovers/paranormal/romance story? Look no further than Duet. And the good news? On July 26, Dreamspinner Press is marking the story down to a mere .99 cents for their Christmas in July celebration. 

Saturday, July 19, 2014

Highway Man Reborn

A few years ago inspiration struck in the form of the haunting Papa Was a Rodeo by the Magnetic Fields, and down and out rock star Killian Desmond was born in my imagination.

During a rare three days of being snowed in (in SC!) he screamed into my ear until Highway Man took form, a short story of approximately 8,000 words, later to be published by Dreamspinner Press on their site.Readers loved the characters of Killian and Mike, but wanted to know more about the guys, and in particular, what became of them. Once the rights reverted to me, the story grew to 15,000 and is now available through Rocky Ridge Books. 

http://rockyridgebooks.com/sample-page/eden-winters/highway-man-by-eden-winters/

Killian Desmond’s dreams died in a flash of pain and the scream of twisted metal. He lost it all the night a tour bus sailed off a mountainside, sending his band—with his brother—to their deaths.

Killian is dead too, if the papers are to be believed, and living a half-life of odd jobs, rodeo rides and pick up gigs. The road that once meant freedom is now Killy’s exile. No strings, no ties, no names for the one-night stands.

Answering a tribute band’s ad thrusts him face to face with his past, and into the arms of the one man who just might understand.