Tuesday, January 11, 2022

Birthday Party and Prizes Continue at the Focused on Story Blog #birthdayparty #giveaways #prizes


It's a Party for the First Birthday of Arranging a Dream: A Memoir


And the birthday party keeps rockin' on! Today I have even more gifts to giveaway! 

To enter the drawing,  leave a comment below. Easy-peasy.
Click here to return to last week's blog post and leave a comment there too. 
You may leave a comment at Connie Vines' site, Dishin' It Out, when I was her guest last Friday. 
Click here to get there. (She did ask a lot of fun questions!!)

The deadline to enter is Sunday, January 16, 10 pm ET.

Mysteries Prize Package--Winner will receive all three mystery eBooks

Non-Fiction Prize Package--Winner will receive all four eBooks

Grab Bag--Winner can choose one of these books from the grab bag
Birthday Grab Bag
If you are not familiar with all the eBooks, click the page link below for my blog's pages with all the books and book trailers 

 Short Story--Winner will receive a short story by J.Q. Rose
Writing a short story!
The celebration continues--Arranging a Dream through January 16. Click here to download it now for a "feel-good" winter read. Also available in paperback and hardcover!

Arranging a Dream: A Memoir
by J.Q. Rose


The Rose Courier is 2 years old this month!

Tuesday, January 4, 2022

IWSG Blog Hop: Do I Have Regrets About My Writing Career? by J.Q.Rose, Birthday Celebration, Giveaways #IWSGbloghop #Celebration #giveaways


Insecure Writers Support Group Blog Hop
Happy IWSG Blog Hop Day!
Happy First Birthday!
Happy New Year!

What is the Insecure Writer's Support Group?
Founded by author Alex J. Cavanaugh, the Insecure Writer’s Support Group offers support for writers and authors alike. It provides an online database, articles and tips, a monthly blog posting, a Facebook and Instagram group, Twitter, and a monthly newsletter. To find out more, click this link:  Insecure Writer’s Support Group

The purpose of the group is 
* to share and encourage. 
* Writers can express doubts and concerns without fear of appearing foolish or weak. 
* Those who have been through the fire can offer assistance and guidance. 
*It’s a safe haven for insecure writers of all kinds! 
You're invited to become a member of this supportive group. Click here to sign-up.

Our awesome co-hosts for the January 5 posting of the IWSG are Erika Beebe, Olga Godim, Sandra Cox, Sarah Foster, and Chemist Ken!

Hello and Welcome! How much excitement can one endure in a day?? Two big events today.

1. It's time for the IWSG Blog Hop! I always look forward to getting together with writers and reading their blogs filled with wisdom, humor and caring thoughts on the first Wednesday of the month.

Happy First Birthday!

2. Today is also the kick-off of the birthday celebration for my memoir, Arranging a Dream! Discover how you can celebrate with me and win free books and prizes January 4-16 after I answer the January question.


January 5 question - What's the one thing about your writing career you regret the most? Were you able to overcome it?

I can't say I have regrets. I have more gratitude than regrets in my writing career. I am thrilled I've had teachers and friends and family who have encouraged me to write stories since I was in second grade. (Yeah, there's a story to that experience.) 

All the members in my critique groups have made major differences in building confidence and worthiness to have a book published. I am thrilled to be a hybrid publisher and have the opportunities these methods offer to writers to share their work with readers. And oh those amazing readers! I have received such heartwarming moments from them in reviews and in person. 

I value how the writing community comes together to help each other, such as IWSG. My biggest surprise was the generosity and support from authors who could be considered competitors. 

This question made me examine my writing career through the years. It came at the right time as I plan on opening a new chapter in this ever-evolving experience called writing. Thank you.

You're Invited!
Several lucky commenters will win an eBook or short story. Just leave a comment below to enter.

Speaking of regrets. I remember a conversation with my husband, GT, way back in the 70s about buying a greenhouse business. We had a baby girl to provide for, good paychecks, friends and family we loved. Still, we decided to pursue that dream of becoming entrepreneurs because we didn't want to look back, sitting in our rocking chairs on the porch during our senior years, and regret not trying to make our dream come true.  

If we failed, we figured we were young enough to start over. We knew if we didn't try and give it our all, the decision would haunt us for the rest of our lives. I'm glad we shared the ups and downs together and will never regret taking the opportunity to start out on the life-changing adventure as entrepreneurs. 

If you would like to know more about that first year in the flower business in 1975-1976, download a copy of Arranging a Dream: A Memoir for 99 cents at amazon.com. Or, leave a comment below to enter to win the eBook! 
The deadline for entry is Sunday, January 16, 10:00 p.m. ET. Good luck!!

Today, my fellow Michigan author and friend, Diane Burton, is helping me get the word out about the birthday celebration. Click here to stop by her blog to read her review of Arranging a Dream.

January 7: Please pop into both of my hosts this Friday when they feature Arranging a Dream.
Click here to visit Sandra's Place blog. Sandra Cox wheedled some Fun Facts from me.
Click here to visit Connie Vines' blog about what else? Arranging a Dream!

January 14 and 15: Janet Lane Walters interviews me on Friday.On Saturday she features 3 of my books and you can imagine that one will be my memoir. I'll have links to the post next week.

Thank you to those who are helping me get the word out via social media. See what I mean about writers being generous and supportive of each other?

Click here to receive the monthly edition of the Rose Courier in your inbox. 
Don't miss out on the news from J.Q. Rose, articles, guest authors and giveaways!!

Now it's time to Click here to visit the participants in the IWSG Blog Hop. 

Tuesday, December 21, 2021

Short Story: The Starry Night by J. Q. Rose, Birthday Celebration #christmasstory #birthday #ebooksale


Merry Christmas from J.Q.Rose

Hello and welcome! 

I hope you are looking forward to Christmas because ready or not, it'll be here on December 25th!

I am sharing a short Christmas story with you today. I was caught up in all the holiday fun and food and needed a reminder of the reason for Christmas. It's not the tinsel and the fruitcake. It's Jesus' birthday! 

Whatever holiday you celebrate, please know I wish you joy, hope, peace and love this season and throughout the New Year 2022!

The Starry Night

The Starry Night by J.Q.Rose

Noor’s eyes widened in wonder. The millions of stars faded in the brilliance of the star in the night sky. The fields appeared as if it were mid-day. The sheep stood silent all around him. What is happening? His heart thudded in his chest for in all his eight years of living, he had never experienced such a moment. The sound of sweet voices from heaven calmed Noor and peace overcame him.

His father approached him and whispered,  “Hurry, Noor, we must go to Bethlehem.”

“But why, Baba? What is happening?”

“Did you not hear the angel tell us our King is born, is here? Come, come, we must follow the star.”

“Noor.” He stooped to search the boy’s face. “Listen to me. We’re leaving now. Stay by me.”

Grabbing his staff, he scurried to catch up with his father rushing toward the path leading to Bethlehem. As they followed the star, more shepherds joined in the pilgrimage. Soon the men engulfed him.

Unable to breathe in the suffocating crowd, Noor pushed his way to the side of the pathway. Finally free from the tangle of men, he stopped to take deep breaths. The view of the star mesmerized him. The starlight seemed brighter.

“Noor, come on,” his brother hollered as the throng of believers swept him out of sight. Noor stumbled after his brother but gave up. He was exhausted.

The next morning his father’s harsh words jolted Noor awake. “You never listen! You didn’t stay by me.”

Relief flowed through him knowing his father found him sleeping alongside the path. But sadness filled his heart. “Baba, I never saw the King.”

Pointing his finger to his chest, his father said. “Nor did I. Instead, I searched for you everywhere!” His angry face softened. Instead of a whack, Baba embraced his son as their tears trickled down their cheeks.

Thirty years later, Noor’s father now bent with old age asked, “Son, help me bring up the bucket from the well.”

Noor leaned his staff against the well. With his strong muscles, he helped his dad pull up the bucket so they could drink the refreshing water.

Noor and his father stepped away from the well, allowing the man behind him an opportunity to go ahead.

“Thank you, Noor.”

“You’re welcome, sir.” His brow creased with a puzzled frown. “ May I ask how you know me?”

The man’s gentle eyes filled with mischief. “Well, listen carefully. We never actually met on that starry night in Bethlehem. But I know you.” He squeezed Noor’s shoulder gently. “Today I can meet you and your father in person.”

Janet Glaser writing as J.Q. Rose

copyright J.Q. Rose 2021

December 2021


Arranging a Dream: A Memoir by J.Q Rose
A "feel-good story"

YES, Arranging a Dream: A Memoir was released by BWL Publishing on January 1, 2021, so we are celebrating that birthday in January. eBook giveaways, free stories--and it's easy to win! Just leave a comment between January 4-16 on this blog. Winners will be announced on January 19! 

Please come back and be a winner!!!

If you can't wait, then visit amazon to pick up Arranging a Dream especially on sale for the celebration for 99 cents. Click here to download now.

PLEASE NOTE: I am taking a break, but I'll see you for the Insecure Writers Support Group Blog Hop on January 5, 2022!!







Tuesday, December 14, 2021

Gutted by J.Q. Rose #MFRWHooks


Book Hooks--excerpts from novels

   Book Hooks Blog Hop #MFRWHooks

Hello and welcome to the Focused on Story Blog. Today we're joining the Book Hooks Blog Hop sponsored by the Marketing For Romance Writers Group. Each participating blogger shares an excerpt from their book. Today, I share an excerpt from my memoir, Arranging a Dream: A Memoir. 

Arranging a Dream: A Memoir
by J.Q. Rose

BACK OF THE BOOK: Arranging a Dream: A Memoir

In 1975, budding entrepreneurs Ted and Janet purchase a floral shop and greenhouses where they plan to grow their dream. Leaving friends and family behind in Illinois and losing the security of two paychecks, they transplant themselves, their one-year-old daughter, and all their belongings to Fremont, Michigan, where they know no one. 

 Will the retiring business owners nurture Ted and Janet as they struggle to develop a blooming business, or will they desert the young couple to wither and die in their new environment?

 Most of all, can Ted and Janet grow together as they cultivate a loving marriage, juggle parenting with work, and root a thriving business?

Follow this couple’s inspiring story, filled with the joy and triumphs and the obstacles and failures experienced as they travel along the turbulent path of turning dreams into reality.

Arranging a Dream: A Memoir by J.Q Rose
A "feel-good story"
Note: In this scene, we have moved to the apartment over the flower shop in December in order to learn about the business before purchasing it in January. Hattie, the owner, is supposed to be training us to take over. However, she has not been very cooperative. Agnese is the older woman who works for Hattie.

Excerpt: Chapter 8, Gutted

A few days before Christmas, Ted came upstairs. I had never seen him so dejected as if he were a boy and someone had taken away his favorite toy. “What’s wrong?” I asked, not sure if he was sick or upset about something.

He sat next to me on the couch. “Hattie asked me not to hang around the shop anymore.”

My head jerked back to absorb the shocking statement. The whole point of moving up here in December was to learn about the shop and get experience with the operations. We had thought of Hattie as our mentor.

“Why?” I scooted toward him. “Is she mad about something?”

“She said I make Agnese nervous hovering over her.” He hopped up from the couch too upset to sit still.

I sniffed at the idea. Agnese was no withering violet. She was a capable, hard worker with years of experience in the flower business. She had raised sons and knew how to handle young men.

I stood up, looking into his troubled eyes. “I think the truth is you’re making Hattie nervous, not Agnese. We need to talk to Hattie.” I threw up my hands. “Tell her the whole point is for us to be around to learn the business.”

Her actions stirred up my protective Mama bear state of mind. She had hurt my husband and I wasn’t going to let her get away with it.

 “No. I don’t even want to look at her, let alone talk to her. I’m done with Hattie. When we take over the business, I want her out of here as soon as possible. I don’t even want her in my sight.” His rejection by Hattie had not only hurt his feelings, but he had also lost his respect for her.

I folded my arms and took a deep breath. “I guess the hours we put in for her are worth nothing to her.”

 “Let’s pack up the Christmas gifts and go home for Christmas. I don’t want to sit around here.” His face blazed red with anger.

My eyes turned to stare out the windows at the snowy landscape. I needed time to gather my thoughts. We would be like little kids running home for comfort. But as the idea shaped in my head, my mouth feathered up into a smile. Going home for Christmas would be the best gift to give to our families and each other. My eyes misted over picturing Sara spending this special holiday surrounded by the love of family.

Click the links below to download or order Arranging a Dream! Thank you.

Click here to order the Paperback at amazon.

Click here to download your copy from your favorite online bookseller.

Psssttt---Click here to purchase my romantic suspense novels and this memoir for $1.50 through December 25th during the Smashwords End-of-Year Sale.

The Rose Courier
Click here to receive the monthly edition of the Rose Courier in your inbox. 
Don't miss out on the news from J.Q. Rose, articles, guest authors and giveaways!!

Click here to visit bloggers participating in the #MFRWhooks  Blog Hop!

Merry Christmas from J.Q. Rose

Tuesday, December 7, 2021

Tools and Tidbits for Writers: Engage Your Readers Using Tips on Showing, Not Telling Your Story #toolsandtidbitsforwriters #shownotell


Tools and Tidbits for Writers
by JQ Rose

The Emotion Thesaurus: A Writer's Guide to Character Expression (Second Edition) (Writers Helping Writers Series) Paperback
The Emotion Thesaurus: A Writer's Guide to Character Expression
Available at your Favorite Bookseller

Tips on Showing Your Characters, Not Just Telling About Them

If you are a writer, you don't want to start editing a scene and discover it reads like a second-grader wrote it. To draw readers into the story use imaginative imagery. Include characters who come to life for the reader. Your words convey the emotion and action so well a reader becomes wrapped up in the story.

I have a tip today to help you find the right words to develop a full character.

My go-to book for developing scenes and characters is The Emotion Thesaurus: A Writers Guide to Characters Expression. 

According to the description, the purpose of The Emotion Thesaurus, "in its easy-to-navigate list format, will inspire you to create stronger, fresher character expressions and engage readers from your first page to your last."

The table of contents is easy to use to find the emotion you need to portray. You'll appreciate it when looking through the 130 emotions listed to discover the one you need. Here are examples of the emotions that are covered in the book--Fear, Frustration, Happiness, Impatience, Nostalgia, Pride and more.

In the listings for each emotion, you will find ideas to keep your writing fresh.

  • physical signals
  • internal sensations
  • mental responses
  • cues of acute or long-term (emotion)
The authors do not suggest you copy the information word for word, but rather to allow their suggestions to inspire you to show, not tell the story.

May I suggest The Emotion Thesaurus as the perfect gift for an aspiring or veteran writer? Since writing this book, the authors have extended the thesaurus idea into a series for other topics in writing like character flaws, character attributes, psychological trauma and more.

Do you use this book or any of the books in the series? Please leave a comment below. 

If you purchase the book using the link below, I will gain a few pennies from the sale. Plus you can check out the entire list of books in the series. Thank you.

While you are in the gift buying mood, why not purchase an eBook that will help you with your writing? Yes, it's okay to buy yourself a gift and not feel guilty about it! 

Romance and Mystery Authors on Writing: Tips on the Writing Process, Publishing and Marketing
Compiled by J. Q. Rose

Romance and Mystery Authors On Writing--a Gift to Yourself 

Fifteen romance and mystery authors offer writing tips they have gleaned from their experiences as “on-the-job” writers. The tips in the eBook are organized into the main topics of writing, publishing and marketing. The authors share 

🛠 “light bulb moments” in their writing journey, 

🛠 questions they are asked most often (and their answers)

🛠 the most helpful advice on writing they have received. 

The goal of sharing this information is to smooth and straighten the rocky and twisting journey for writers along the path to enjoy a rewarding career in writing.

Best wishes to you for success in your writing career.

Authors who have graciously contributed to this project are:

Conda Douglas, C. Hope Clark, Gail Roughton, Heather Fraser Brainerd, Heather Haven, Helena Fairfax, J.Q. Rose, Joan Curtis, Joselyn Vaughn, Kathy MacIntosh, Marsha West, Melissa Maygrove, Miss Mae, Roseanne Dowell, Sara-Jayne Townsend.

Thank you, inspiring authors, for sharing your knowledge!

Click here to download this jam-packed-with-helpful-information eBook now for 99 cents!


The Rose Courier

Click here to receive the monthly edition of the Rose Courier in your inbox. 
Don't miss out on the news from J.Q. Rose, articles, guest authors and giveaways!!

Tuesday, November 30, 2021

Stress and Delight in Writing #IWSGbloghop #writing


Insecure Writer's Support Group BLOG HOP
Happy IWSG Blog Hop Day!
Happy December!
Happy Holidays!

What is the Insecure Writer's Support Group?
Founded by author Alex J. Cavanaugh, the Insecure Writer’s Support Group offers support for writers and authors alike. It provides an online database, articles and tips, a monthly blog posting, a Facebook and Instagram group, Twitter, and a monthly newsletter. To find out more, click this link:  Insecure Writer’s Support Group

The purpose of the group is 
* to share and encourage. 
* Writers can express doubts and concerns without fear of appearing foolish or weak. 
* Those who have been through the fire can offer assistance and guidance. 
*It’s a safe haven for insecure writers of all kinds! 
You're invited to become a member of this supportive group. Click here to sign-up.
Thank you to our awesome co-hosts for the December posting of the IWSG Blog Hop- PJ Colando, Diane Burton, Louise – Fundy Blue, Natalie Aguirre, and Jacqui Murray!

Question of the Month
Photo courtesy of geralt / 23304 images at Pixabay

December 1 question - 
In your writing, what stresses you the most? What delights you?
Wringing my hands at the moment trying to decide what stresses me the most in my writing. I believe it is when I write the scene that I see clearly in my head, but the words on the paper do not convey the emotion I want readers to feel. Writing and re-writing it to be more powerful, more exciting, more romantic, more imaginative and not feeling satisfied with the result is stressful.

I am delighted, after putting away the ms for several weeks, my story reads better than I thought!
Insecurity x 10
It's too late to ask now, but for future promotions, I wonder about paying for ads for my books during the fourth quarter of the year and especially during this crazy Black Friday-Cyber Monday weekend. Do you think people are buying books during that time or will my ads just get lost in the noise? When is the time to sell romance novels or mysteries? When is the time to sell children's chapter books? 
I have heard people buy books in January because many have received new reading devices like Kindle, Nook, cell phones. Is there any truth to this?
And, finally, I am a Scrooge when it comes to paying to advertise a 99 cent book. I know I may gain some buzz for the book, but I have not seen reviews added to my page. Ewww, I just had a sickening realization, maybe the readers hated it and didn't want to say anything to hurt my feelings. 

Please leave a comment below with your thoughts on when, or if, to pay for ads. Thank you!

Click here to visit more bloggers in the IWSG Blog Hop!

Click here to receive the monthly edition of the Rose Courier in your inbox. 
Don't miss out on the news from J.Q. Rose, articles, 
guest authors and giveaways!!

Tuesday, November 23, 2021

#Book Review: The Growing Season by Sarah Frey, the Pumpkin Queen #Thanksgivingpumpkinpie #memoir #entrepreneur


Memoirs and More

Hello and Welcome to the Focused on Story Blog!

The fourth Wednesday of the month focuses on Memoirs and Life Storytelling. Today I am reviewing a heart-warming memoir, The Growing Season by Sarah Frey. I am adding this book to my favorite memoirs list.

Do you plan to have pumpkin pie on your Thanksgiving table? You can thank Sarah Frey for the popularity of pumpkins! Her story takes the reader deep into the pumpkin and cantaloupe fields and fresh produce markets and draws you into her family and their situation. Hers is a fascinating story of making her dream come true.

The Growing Season by Sarah Frey


REVIEW: The Growing Season: How I Built a New Life--and Saved an American Farm by Sarah Frey

Cantaloupe a.k.a. Muskmelons
Image by PublicDomainImages from Pixabay 

The memoir, The Growing Season, caught my attention when selecting audiobooks in the Libby app. We like to listen during our long 22-hour ride from Michigan to Florida. My hubby, Ted a.k.a. Gardener Ted (GT for short) is rooted deep in gardening. He loves it especially when the weather is perfect and produces fantastic harvests of vegetables and strawberries. I thought this story would be about growing vegetables. It was. But on a level much larger than GT’s garden!

The author, Sarah Frey who is known now as the pumpkin queen, grew up on a farm in Southern Illinois—a mismanaged farm thanks to her father’s addictions to alcohol and gambling served with a side of laziness and meanness. He pushed his kids to do all the labor on the farm so he could play the ponies and party away from home. They had plenty of kids and Sarah was the baby in the family, just like me. She worked alongside her older brothers who always treated her like she was one of the boys. Growing up in such harsh surroundings and working with her brothers shaped her never-give-up attitude and strong work ethic. Growing a business takes determination and passion. Sarah had both.

This feisty girl lived in the country, an isolated area where she spent her hours playing outdoors when she had her farm chores done. Her classmates considered her odd as she didn't associate with them preferring her farm and animals and gardens. Because she was so different from other kids, Sarah's school life was a struggle. She fought her way through school and won thanks to teachers who recognized her brilliance.

Sarah began her “business” delivering cantaloupe in their run-down truck with her mom when she was a kid. They sold the fruit from their farm to local grocery stores. When Sarah was a teen she took over the deliveries when her mother could no longer take on the responsibility. With her energy, brains and drive, she grew that small route into a billion-dollar enterprise.

Pumpkins growing in our garden. Note our grandsons' names carved into the pumpkins.GT did that when the pumpkins were small, and as they grew so did the names and the boys!

But why is Sarah the Pumpkin Queen? She has led the way in the produce industry making pumpkins popular year-round, not just in the fall for Halloween jack-o-lanterns or Thanksgiving day pies. She has also developed pumpkin recipes and a line of prepared food for sale.The pumpkins' bright color, taste and a large number of varieties attracted her. Her heart lifts every time she visits the fields spotted with the striking orange pumpkins growing on her farm. 

I enjoyed listening to Sarah narrate the plain-spoken story in the audiobook. Perhaps that’s why I fell in love with her story. She is not a lyrical writer, but she tells the story authentically to reveal her emotions and feelings. I engaged in her story because we share similar experiences and feelings.

Being a billionaire is in no way part of my life story, but I can identify with her dream of being an entrepreneur. We too dreamed of building a successful business, but ours was a floral and greenhouse business. She grew her products on her family farm, and we grew our plants in greenhouses.

Arranging a Dream: A Memoir
by J.Q. Rose
Follow Janet and Ted's inspiring story as they travel the path of turning dreams into reality.

I grew up with my mom, dad, my two older brothers and my dog, King, in a comfortable home. I could not relate to her childhood of poverty at all, but, like Sarah, I have older brothers I adored and admired. Family was (and is) important to her and to me. She involved her family in her business, and I “worked” in our family business, the funeral business, with my brothers and parents. I guess you could call dusting caskets and setting up flowers work?

As Sarah’s business grew, she asked her brothers to come back to the farm and help her "grow" her dream. We included our kids in our floral business. They still complain about only getting paid twenty-five cents to fill up a large bucket with water tubes. One rose is slipped into a tube of water to keep the flower fresh until it can be placed in a vase of water. The job of filling the tubes (and playing in the water) was perfect to keep little hands busy.

 My daughters were too young to realize how important this job was, but if the girls ever did figure out how they saved time for the designers to create floral arrangements instead of filling tubes, they may have demanded fifty cents a bucket!

Sarah’s memoir and mine are similar in dealing with motherhood and running a business. Balancing family and work is a challenge. A mom's feeling of guilt worrying about the business when at home with the kids, then worrying about the kids when at work is a universal concern and will be as long as there are working mothers.

I purchased the eBook because I enjoyed The Growing Season narrated by Sarah in the audiobook version. I'm anxious to experience reading the book and savoring the story in my own time.

Have you identified with an author who has shared her/his life story with you? Do you have a favorite memoir to recommend to readers? Please leave a comment below. Thank you!

Click here to receive the monthly edition of the Rose Courier in your inbox. 
Don't miss out on the news from J.Q. Rose, articles, guest authors and giveaways!!

Arranging a Dream: A Memoir
Click here to download the eBook at your favorite online bookseller.

Click here to order the paperback at Barnes and Noble.   

Click here to order the paperback at amazon.

Birthday Party and Prizes Continue at the Focused on Story Blog #birthdayparty #giveaways #prizes

  It's a Party for the First Birthday of Arranging a Dream: A Memoir 🥳🎈🎈🥳🎈🎈🥳 And the birthday party keeps rockin' on! Today I...

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