Wednesday, April 1, 2020

IWSG Blog Hop: COVID 19 Reveals Our Humanity

Hello and welcome to the Insecure Writer's Support Group Blog Hop!
Always on the first Wednesday of the month.
Happy IWSG Day and Happy April!! 
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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 to join.
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COVID 19 Brings Out Our Humanity

Heart
Image by OpenClipart-Vectors from Pixabay 

I have faith we will get through these hard times. Remember that the “worst thing is never the last thing.” Surely, we will glean something good from this harrowing experience. Here are a few examples of people helping people now.
  • Stories of people helping people are already in the news--neighbors bonding together every night to dance in the street while keeping their social distance,
  • schools and organizations preparing and delivering food to those in need 
  • teachers keeping in touch with their students in many creative ways, 
  • our heroes in the medical field and first responders fighting to save lives, 
  • wonders of wonders our Congress working together, 
  • and publishers, authors and distributors giving away or discounting books and digital products to help readers pass the time while staying home.
 In these dark days, our humanity shines to reinforce our faith in each other. 

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When you're stuck in your house, every monotonous day melts into another day with no plans to see your friends and family or even go out for dinner. I decided to help folks escape from the bad news and sadness. I collected five of my quirky short stories written for the quarterly Storytime blog hop spearheaded by Juneta Key. I enjoyed re-visiting and revising the stories and saving them into a PDF of about 5000 words. 
I plan to give away the PDF's using mailerlite, but I didn't figure out how to do it, yet, in time for the blog hop. I will have it done in time for the Rose Courier delivery late next week though! I also plan to put the link on the blog. You're invited to come back and download it. 
***Do you put the link in Onedrive or Dropbox or Google for readers to download it? If you have some ideas, I'd appreciate them. 
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The Rose Courier delivered to you once a month
If you haven't signed up to receive the Rose Courier in your inbox every month, please enter your email address at the top of the page under The Rose Courier image located in the right sidebar or click here to get this jazzy update every month. Thank you!!

Stay well and safe!
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Tuesday, March 24, 2020

Escape from COVID 19, Vegetable Gardening eBook on Sale 99 cents

Touring England--the Cotswolds
with Gardener Ted and JQ Rose
Hello and welcome to the Focused on Story Blog!

We're dealing with tough times amid the CO-VID 19 crisis. I hope you can take some time to relax and escape with a virtual visit to the English Countryside in the Cotswolds. 

In June 2018, my husband, Gardener Ted, and I traveled to England, rented a car and drove around England. This is one of the videos I put together from the 1000 photos from the trip. I have videos of London and the County of Yorkshire also on my Youtube channel. We had a delightful time seeing places we had heard about all our lives. Or as the English say, "The trip was brilliant!"

Please, grab your popcorn and red licorice. Sit back in your chair. Join us as we discover mysterious stone circles, charming villages, miles of stone walls, and ancient landscapes in the English Cotswolds.
Touring England--the Cotswolds

VIDEO

Youtube Video: Touring England 

with Gardener Ted and J.Q. 

The Cotswolds


Click here for more videos from our Tour of England and travel videos in the Canadian Rockies, Nova Scotia, Gilmore Car Museum and more! 

I hope the video lifted your spirits. We will get through this difficult time.
I believe many good things will come from it.
Remember the worst thing is never the last thing!

Social distancing hugs from J.Q.!!!
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Gardening with Gardener Ted and JQ Rose

Quick Tips on Vegetable Gardening
Quick Tips on Vegetable Gardening:
Starting Your Garden
Gardener Ted and I not only enjoy traveling together. We also enjoy gardening. You can imagine why Ted earned his name as Gardener Ted. This farm boy just has to have his hands in the dirt. So much so, we owned a flower shop, greenhouse and garden center for almost 20 years! He has the gardening knowledge, and I have the writing and publishing experience to produce an eBook for folks interested in gardening.     ➨➨➨➨➨➨➨➨➨

So we combined efforts to share tips on planting and harvesting a vegetable garden. Nothing tastes as good or as fresh, as your own home-grown vegetables.  Quick Tips on Vegetable Gardening: Starting Your Garden is filled with tips gleaned from years of Ted's experience in the garden.

Click the links below to grab your eBook now
while it is on sale for 99 cents!

Amazon Link:

Your Favorite Online Bookseller Link: Kobo, Apple, Nook and more

Then, when you have time, please leave a review to help other readers interested in gardening to find this helpful guide. Thank you!!




Tuesday, March 17, 2020

Author Tool Box Blog Hop: FREE Photos for Your Social Media and Blogs

#AuthorToolboxBlogHop
Hello and welcome to the Focused on Story Blog and to the Author Toolbox Blog Hop #AuthorToolboxBlogHop which meets every third Wednesday of the month to share resources and tips for authors. Thanks to Raimey Gallant for hosting this venture. 

Please join us to learn more about the craft of writing and to meet bloggers who are dedicated to helping each other become the best writers possible. Click here to visit other blog hop participants.
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Antique camera
Image by congerdesign from Pixabay

All the blog gurus emphasize how important photos and videos are for getting viewers to look at your social media and stay on your blog page. But where do you get those FREE photos and gifs that will catch their eye?

Photographer
Image by Pexels from Pixabay 
1. Your own photos--I really like to share my photos online especially travel photos AND they don't cost a dime to use them. Plus I have the rights to the pictures with no need to worry about paying a royalty fee. 
2. Free photo sites--When using a photo site, be sure to check the license for the photo. Free doesn't always mean free--some sites offer free photos, but the user has to pay a fee to use them. The license may include using the attribution with the photo. Never use a photo from the Internet unless you have permission from the photographer or company to use it. You must honor copyright laws.
3. Pixabay and Unsplash--I feel most comfortable using these sites for my photos and I love the huge amount of choices in every imaginable category. The sites make it easy to download and easy to copy the photographer's name and website. The sites note that "attribution is appreciated and allows contributors to gain exposure." Adding the attribution is a record of the photographer. If you like their work, you can always go back and click on the name to look for more of their contributions. You can pay for the photo if you wish. It is not mandatory.

Click here to go to Pixabay.
Click here to go to Unsplash.

Do you like to take pictures? Do you prefer using a camera or your cell phone?

Click here to visit more blog hop participants.

Celebrating Women's History Month
Photo courtesy of Canva

March is women's history month.

Your Words, Your Life Story: A Journal for Sharing Memories
by J.Q. Rose
Be sure to share your history with girls. Tell them the stories of your days growing up or write them down so the girls can read your stories whenever they wish.  Your life is worth sharing and it could be a survival guide to girls growing up now.

Need help telling your life story. Your Words, Your Life Story: A Journal for Sharing Memories can help you get started with many ways to spark memories and how to record your story. 
Click here to order the paperback now for you or as a gift for someone special.
Click here to join the Facebook Group for Telling Your Life Story and Memoir Circle.

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Stories Behind the Careers of Successful Women
by J.Q.Rose

Girls Succeed: Stories Behind the Careers of Successful Women

by J.Q. Rose
For Middle-Grade age girls
Fifteen contemporary women share their dreams for success when they were girls. Be empowered by the amazing women they become. Their persistence to overcome obstacles and break through barriers to complete the goal will have you cheering for them.  Each story in this interactive eBook empowers readers to work toward making their dreams come true. 

A Study Guide is included in the book for use in the classroom or home school curriculum.

Click here to download this interactive e-book at your favorite online bookseller. 
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GOOD NEWS
 Please enter your email address at the top of the page under The Rose Courier to get this jazzy update every month. Thank you!!






Tuesday, March 10, 2020

Celebrating Women During Women's History Month

March is Women's History Month
Image by Clker-Free-Vector-Images from Pixabay 

Hello and welcome to the Focused on Story blog. March is Women's History Month. We celebrate women who through the years have contributed their talents to make our world better.
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Celebrating Women During Women's History Month

According to the National Women’s History Alliance formerly, the National Women’s History Project, this group is "a leader in promoting Women’s History and their mission is committed to the goals of education, empowerment, equality, and inclusion."

In 1980, the National Women’s History Project (NWHP) was founded in Santa Rosa, California. They spearheaded lobbying the US Congress to designate March as Women's History Month to bring awareness to the importance of women's achievements in our history." 
Click here to visit this information-packed website for more about women's history in the US.
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The women of today are....
The historical accounts serve as guides to girls and empower them to move forward. Using the stories of these role models in science, technology, medicine, arts, sports, government, literature and community, the girls will find a place for them to contribute to our society and to make their dreams come true.
 Be sure to share your history with girls. Tell them the stories of your days growing up or write them down so the girls can read your stories whenever they wish.  Your life is worth sharing and it could be a survival guide to girls growing up now.
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Girls Succeed: Stories Behind the Careers of Successful Women

by J.Q. Rose
For Middle-Grade age girls
Fifteen contemporary women share their dreams for success when they were girls. Be empowered by the amazing women they become. Their persistence to overcome obstacles and break through barriers to complete the goal will have you cheering for them. Whether your dream career is included in this interactive eBook or not, each story empowers readers to work toward making their dreams come true. A Study Guide is included in the book for use in the classroom or home school curriculum.

Click here to download this interactive e-book at your favorite online bookseller. 
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GOOD NEWS
The March edition will be in your inbox on Thursday, March 12 IF you signed up for it. (There's still time to sign up) 
Please enter your email address at the top of the page under The Rose Courier to get this jazzy update every month. Thank you!!
🎕🎕🎕🎕
Terror on Sunshine Boulevard byJ.Q. Rose
Rescuing a naked woman lying in a geranium bed? 
Investigating mysterious murders? 
These are not the usual calls in a Florida retirement community 
for volunteer first responder Jim Hart.


PS
--Mystery thriller Terror on Sunshine Boulevard is on sale for 99 cents beginning the KDP Countdown this week. The price will go up on Friday to $1.99 and increase every day until it reaches the regular price on Tuesday, March 17.
Download it now while you can get the bargain price! 
If you have read this book, I would appreciate a review and so would readers. 
Your reviews help readers to discover books they would like to read. Thank you.

Click here to download Terror on Sunshine Boulevard. 










Tuesday, March 3, 2020

IWSG Blog Hop: Seeking Advice on Book Marketing, Smashwords Read an eBook Week Sale

IWSG Badge
IWSG Blog Hop---the first Wednesday of every month.
Hello and welcome to the Insecure Writer's Support Group Blog Hop!
Always on the first Wednesday of the month.

Happy IWSG Day and Happy Month of March!! 
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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 to join.
☘☘☘☘
March 4 question - Other than the obvious holiday traditions, have you ever included any personal or family traditions/customs in your stories?
I don't believe I have other than inserting tidbits from my personal life into the life of the character like loving m&ms or eating chips dipped in ketchup. I also set the scenes in places I have visited or lived such as a funeral home or an old barn.
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Seeking Your Advice on Book Marketing
Because there are so many savvy bloggers here during the IWSG Blog Hop, I hope you will help me with overcoming the insecurity of marketing my memoir, Arranging a Dream. On this blog, I usually talk about tips on writing and feature authors' fiction. With the release of my memoir in June, I wonder if I should open a new blog about memoir writing and memoir reading.

Not only to focus on the June release of the memoir but also because I am a Life Storytelling evangelist! I established-- 
  • a Facebook group, Telling Your Life Story and Memoirs Circle, 
  • published a journal for life story writers, Your Words, Your Life Story: A Journal for Sharing Memories.  
  • leading a workshop on Life Storytelling. 
The blog would be fun to write, but so time-consuming trying to keep 2 blogs afloat. Is it better to keep this blog as a hub for all my fiction and non-fiction books?


What do you think? I'd appreciate your feedback. Please leave a comment below. 
Get the March edition of the Rose Courier delivered to your inbox. Every month, fun and surprises and all the latest news on J.Q. Rose's adventures in the world of books with
Click here to sign up.
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50% Off eBooks at Smashwords during Read an eBook Week!
Romantic suspense, Deadly Undertaking is on Sale through March 7.

Deadly Undertaking by J.Q. Rose
Romantic Suspense
A handsome detective, a shadow man, and a murder victim 
kill Lauren’s plan for a simple life.
Click here to save 50% during the Smashwords Sale!
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Thank you for stopping in!







Tuesday, February 25, 2020

What is Writer's Block and How to Defeat It



Writer's Block
Image by Lukas Bieri from Pixabay
 

What is Writer's Block and How to Defeat It by J.Q. Rose

Writer's block. Everyone talks about it, but what is it???
Writer's block appears when a writer sits down to write, but can't think of anything to put down on the paper. I have never suffered from a severe case of writer's block. That sounds like it must be a disease. But it isn't. 

Writer's block is not a physical problem like a broken arm. Although, you may get a headache or upset stomach when facing the blank page/screen.

Writing coach Jeff Goins says it is an "excuse." An excuse not to write, not to work on your project. Do you suppose any other worker in the world can blame his/her inability to work on an invisible force? No. You go to work. (But please don't go if you have a virus or fever!)

Writer's block is what people say is keeping them from writing, but Goins maintains there is no such condition. Instead, Goins offers the real cause of writer's block:
  • Fear
  • Exhaustion
  • High standards (which is basically fear of failure)
  • Imposter Syndrome (fear of rejection)
  • Perfectionism (fear of not being good enough)
  • Busyness (fear of not having enough time)
  • Laziness (or is it really fear?)
  • Lack of structure (fear of not knowing how to start)
Think about it. Do any of the reasons apply to you? Fear of rejection and perfectionism certainly niggles in my brain when I am working on my WIP (Work-In-Progress). 

I would also add Comparing my work to another author's work. Comparison can really knock you down. Face it. Someone can write better than me. Someone can also write a lot worse than me. But no one can write the same as me. I am the author and that is what makes my writing special. 

Click here to read more of Jeff Goins's excellent article on writer's block. 

So what can you do to get rid of writer's block? Face it head-on and knock it out of your head by focusing on the cause of the block. Could it be from one of the causes listed above? Do you have another reason for writer's block invading your space? Please leave a comment below to help others knock out writer's block.
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Deadly Undertaking
by J.Q.Rose

romantic suspense

I must admit I had a difficult time writing my romantic suspense novel, Deadly Undertaking. The main character is the daughter of an undertaker. I am the daughter of an undertaker. The setting is a funeral home based on my Dad's Victorian-style funeral home. 

I discovered I couldn't write the story. So many memories of those growing-up years flooded over me as I wrote. I had to put the story away until I could separate the real me from the main character. Then I could write the fictional part of the story and allow her to face and overcome the conflict in the novel. And did I ever give her lots of problems--boyfriends, family, and a shadow man. Whew!

Click here to download the ebook copy of Deadly Undertaking on sale now at amazon for $2.99
Click here to order the paperback copy of Deadly Undertaking.
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I know there are a lot of places for you to visit on the Internet. Thanks for stopping here at the Focused on Story Blog. 

Submit your email address to the Follow by Email box on the right sidebar to be notified when a new blog is up.

The Rose Courier--delivered to your inbox every month!
Click here or on the Rose Courier graphic at the top of the sidebar to have your copy of the Courier delivered to your inbox. You'll find out about new releases, favorite authors, giveaways, contests with prizes and what JQ is up to.

Thanks!







Tuesday, February 18, 2020

Author Toolbox Blog Hop: Developing Characters in Your Writing

#AuthorToolboxBlogHop
Hello and welcome to the Focused on Story Blog and to the Author Toolbox Blog Hop #AuthorToolboxBlogHop which meets every third Wednesday of the month to share resources and tips for authors. Thanks to Raimey Gallant for hosting this venture. 

Please join us to learn more about the craft of writing and to meet bloggers who are dedicated to helping each other become the best writers possible. Click here to visit other blog hop participants.
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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
Tip on Developing Characters in Your Writing by J.Q. Rose

If you are a romance writer, you don't want to edit a romantic scene and discover it reads like a second-grader wrote it or that you used the same words over and over and over and over. I have a tip today to help you find the right words to show not tell a love story with characters who will grab a reader.

My go-to book for helping me to get out of that stuck stage when writing a scene is The Emotion Thesaurus: A Writers Guide to Characters Expression. 

The description describes the purpose of the book--"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.

Since writing this book, the authors have extended the Thesaurus into a series for other topics in writing like character flaws, character attributes, psychological trauma and more.

Do you use this book or any in the series? Please leave a comment below. Thank you.
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The Rose Courier--delivered to your inbox every month!
Click here or on the Rose Courier graphic at the top of the sidebar to have your copy of the Courier delivered to your inbox. You'll find out about new releases, favorite authors, giveaways, contests with prizes and what JQ is up to.
Thanks!


Tuesday, February 11, 2020

Excerpt: A Pig, a Kangaroo, and a Pastor, Oh My! #MFRWhooks

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. (#MFRWhooks) Each participating blogger shares an excerpt from a novel. I'm featuring my romantic suspense, Dangerous Sanctuary. I hope it will give you some smiles during this month of romance.
You're invited to come on along to visit authors sharing their books with you. The link to the list of participants is at the end of the page. Have fun!
Dangerous Sanctuary by J.Q.Rose
Romantic suspense
 Pastor Christine Hobbs never imagined she would be caring for
 a flock that includes a pig, a kangaroo, and a murderer.
Back of the Book:
Pastor Christine Hobbs has been in the pulpit business for over five years. She never imagined herself caring for a flock that includes a pig, a kangaroo, and a murderer. 

Detective Cole Stephens doesn't want the pretty pastor to get away with murdering the church music director. His investigative methods infuriate Christine as much as his deep brown eyes attract her.

Can they find the real killer and build a loving relationship based on trust?

Excerpt: Dangerous Sanctuary, Chapter 14

 Christine watched the EMTs load Iola into the ambulance and secure the cot inside. Harley boosted up the pig, shoved him into the back of the ambulance, and started to grab the kangaroo. The EMT stuck his head out the back door. “Hold on there. Wait a minute. Sir, we can’t be taking a pig to the hospital and for sure, not that kangaroo either. You’ve gotta leave them here.”

Flashing a glance at Christine, the EMT rolled his eyes and shook his head. “Hurry up, sir. We’ve got to get this patient to the hospital.”

Harley pulled Abraham out of the ambulance. Grabbing the pig and the kangaroo’s leashes, he quickly handed them off to Christine, then hoisted himself into the back of the ambulance with help from the EMT. The siren wailed as the lime green ambulance lumbered its way out of the parking lot onto the road and toward the intersection.

Christine stood in the parking lot hanging onto the leash of the agitated pig in one hand and the docile kangaroo in the other. Taking her eyes from the ambulance careening out of the parking lot, she turned her attention to the animals and wondered what just happened here.

Her heart caught in her throat when she spotted Cole Stephens speed into the parking lot, barely missing the departing ambulance. What was he doing here?  He pulled up near her and jumped from the car. “I heard the call come through. I was afraid of what I’d discover at this church.” 

His serious expression broke out into a huge smile. “You never know what situation a 9-1-1 call will lead to. This… this is a first for me.” His hearty laughter echoed off the brick walls of the building. He wiped tears of laughter from his eyes with the back of his hand.

Cole’s appearance seemed to shake up the animals. Christine struggled to hang on to them, so the detective grabbed the kangaroo’s harness and tried to calm the frightened animal.  “What are you doing with the Noah’s ark critters?”

She saw the twinkle in his eyes. Her face cracked into a smile. She had to admit it was an odd situation. She must look like an idiot standing out in the lot hanging onto these two adorable creatures.

“Well, in a nutshell. A woman had a cardiac arrest here in the parking lot. As you saw, she’s on her way to the hospital, and well, these are her pets.”

Christine swept her free hand toward the animals just catching a glimpse of Jackson’s old van making a beeline for the parking lot exit. “Isn’t that right, Ella?”

“Yes, her pets.” Ella nodded and pointed to Katy and Abraham.

“Um, I guess I’m keeping them till, well, until… Let’s just say we didn’t really have time to discuss it. I’m sure you probably have a place to put them, don’t you?”

“Huh-uh, lady. I’m not taking in any animals.” He backed away as if they were wild animals ready to attack. “Anyway, my retriever would probably eat them.” His wink was disarming.
Christine turned to Ella standing nearby. “Ella, would you?”

 “No way, Pastor. You’re on your own with those animals. Remember? I’m the one who didn’t even want the cat.” Ella made a quick exit for the safety of the church office.
Christine turned to the detective. “Now what am I going to do?” She pushed her bangs off her forehead.

 “I can call the animal shelter. They’ll probably take them. Meanwhile, shall we take them over to the parsonage lawn instead of standing here?” He tugged a bit on the kangaroo’s leash.  Katy didn’t exactly hop right. She had a hitch in her hop gait.

What a sight as the little band hopped, tugged, pulled their way across the street and into the back yard.
Dangerous Sanctuary by J.Q.Rose
Romantic suspense



“Do you think this animal is housebroken?” Cole asked.

Christine sliced her gaze at Cole ready to dress him down while she was in the middle of this predicament until she spotted those sparkling eyes full of mischief. A grin spread across her face. “Well, I don’t think the congregation would appreciate a kangaroo in the parsonage, nor a pig. Would you call the shelter for me now, please?”  

“Sure.” He slipped his phone off his belt.

Thank goodness Katy and Abraham needed her attention. Otherwise, she would’ve cupped his face in her hands and given him a healthy kiss for staying here with her.
***
Click here to download your copy at amazon.

Click here to order the paperback edition of Dangerous Sanctuary.

About J.Q. Rose--
After writing feature articles in magazines, newspapers, and online magazines for over fifteen years, J.Q. Rose entered the world of fiction. Her published mysteries From BWL Publishing are Terror on Sunshine Boulevard, Dangerous Sanctuary, and Deadly Undertaking. Blogging, photography, Pegs and Jokers board games, and travel are the things that keep her out of trouble. She and her husband, Gardener Ted, spend winters in Florida and summers up north camping and hunting toads, frogs, and salamanders with her four grandsons and granddaughter.

Click here to visit bloggers who are participating in the Book Hooks Blog Hop. 
Enjoy meeting new authors and visiting your favorites. 
Thanks for stopping by.
J.Q. Rose

Connect with J.Q. Rose online at
J.Q. Rose blog http://www.jqrose.com/
J. Q.  Rose Amazon Author Page http://tinyurl.com/aeuv4m4



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Click here or on the Rose Courier graphic at the top of the sidebar to have your copy of the Courier delivered to your inbox. You'll find out about new releases, favorite authors, giveaways, contests with prizes and what JQ is up to.
Thanks!