Welcome To A Month Of Thrills and Chills!

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It’s the month of October here at Through Heart-Shaped Glasses and our theme for this month is Scare Me! Have you ever wondered what might scare a romance writer? Or do romance writers prefer to do the scaring? Hang out with us this month and find out. There’s a lot going on.

Check back often to catch blog posts from our  regular cast of writers, plus we’ve got guest blogs by Becky Lower on October 15th and by Ally Broadfield on October 30th.

And this month one winner will be chosen at random from all the comments to win an ecopy of my romantic suspense, Beyond the Winner’s Circle plus a $10 Amazon Gift Card!

We’re looking forward to a month of scary fun around here…please join us!

About Beth Rhodes

Beth jumps into life with both feet...or head first. Impulsive and spontaneous to a T, she joined Passionate Critters and never looked back. She loves writing and reading, which made this wonderful group of woman a perfect match for her.

Learning Never Stops

We don’t have back to school in our house. We have an empty nest. But with so much of our lives lived online these days, it’s almost impossible to not be affected by your friends or family getting the kids ready for another year. Personally I love September.Young Girl Does Her Math Homework

It’s a time for review, a reminder if you will, about tasks that need to be completed before years end. The weather is cooling a bit, so it’s time to dig out all the wonderful recipes you don’t make in the summer because they require using the oven. It’s the holiday train at station 3 ¾ picking up steam headed straight into, dare I say it? I can’t bear it. Let’s just say some sort of holiday or reason to shop for something from here on out.

It’s also a time I use to assess my writing, what I’ve accomplished through the year, and what I still want to learn.  Yes, learn. Advertisements are starting to show up for next spring’s writer’s conferences, along with requests for leading workshops, and teaching online classes. I don’t know many writers who aren’t either attending some sort of class about something do to with writing, or teaching the same.

But I don’t always take classes about writing. Let’s not forget all the jokes people make about romance writers and research. Certainly some of them are true. I’m just not at liberty to say which parts. In order to suspend disbelief for the reader we need to understand the settings we’ve placed our stories in, as well as the jobs our characters have, and many other things. In short we need to give our readers something to identify with. It’s true that we’re not born knowing everything. If only that were the case!!

If I weren’t a writer I’d probably be a professional student. I love learning new things. I’ve taken classes on weaponry, witchcraft, serial killers, army infantry, knitting, calligraphy, and many other things. As writers we are always working to perfect our craft. And that’s at best an elusive goal. But the journey is one I wouldn’t trade for anything.

I think my favorite class was the one I took at a community college to learn calligraphy. I didn’t realize just how much there is to the alphabet.

Is there a class you’ve taken that you absolutely loved?

 

About Beth Rhodes

Beth jumps into life with both feet...or head first. Impulsive and spontaneous to a T, she joined Passionate Critters and never looked back. She loves writing and reading, which made this wonderful group of woman a perfect match for her.

Traveling Romance

ArizonaIf you subscribe to this sort of thing, I must have been a nomad in another life. I just can’t wait to find out what’s over the next hill. Or see what the shining lights are across that stretch of plains. If I’m home too long, I get the itch to travel. I get grouchy. I feel deprived. Weird, huh?

But I never leave home without my trusty ereader loaded with my latest TBR’s. After all, there might be some down time. It would be a shame to waste it not reading.

I read my first romance at twelve. It was Shanna by Kathleen Woodiwiss. I’m fairly certain it was the first thing I read that included any descriptions of England, islands, pirates, ball gowns and the way someone else might have lived that was so different from the way I lived. It truly swept me away. I’m still awed by the work she put into her novels. Although it wasn’t written for my age group, her attention to detail, her vivid and thorough descriptions were captivating. As a published author, thinking about them still makes me go, wow!

San FranciscoAnd when I travel, I try to catch those little details that will bring my work to life. The way one small town differs from another, the way one big city is so opposite another. The architecture, the landscaping, the town squares or skyscrapers, and the accents of the citizens. I look at houses or buildings and wonder who lives or works there. I want each thread carefully woven together to resonate with readers in the same manner as hers did with me.

SONY DSCBefore I could afford to travel, I went lots of places through romance novels. People can scoff as much as they want, but if all of the writers I know are any indication, you can pretty much count on the settings being based in reality, and the details being accurate. Not that we don’t have our way with a plot thread, but it is fiction after all. When I think of reading or writing, I think of big sweeping stories, and grand adventures that change lives. But with that grand adventure, I want the details that bring the setting to life.

The novels I’ve written thus far are set in America because that’s the place I’m most familiar with. I won’t say it’s easy, but it’s comfortable. And it’s a big, diverse place. Every time I travel I come up with more ideas for stories. I’m constantly taking pictures out the car window to keep for inspiration.SONY DSC

Do you have a favorite location you enjoy reading or writing about?

Don’t forget to leave a comment to be entered in the drawing for this month’s swag!

About Beth Rhodes

Beth jumps into life with both feet...or head first. Impulsive and spontaneous to a T, she joined Passionate Critters and never looked back. She loves writing and reading, which made this wonderful group of woman a perfect match for her.

Livin’ Easy in the Summertime

Honestly, as far as weather, I’m a spring and fall kinda girl. Don’t like to sunflowersbe too hot, or too cold. I know, picky, picky, picky. BUT, there are two things that absolutely mean summer to me, and I love them both. One is cookouts and the other is auto racing. It can be any kind, I’m not picky about that.

I love cars. Even as a little girl. I think I went to my first car race at about eight, and I still remember being fascinated by the fast, shiny cars and all the noise they made. That hasn’t changed.

Although I enjoy the beach and the pool, I don’t get there much because I’m so fair, I get sun poisoning at the drop of a hat. So I tend to do activities with more clothes than less. But that’s okay. My friends don’t care what I wear, and that’s just the best.

We have several couple friends and during the summer we get together often. Almost every weekend it seems, we’re enjoying a cookout at someone’s house, or they are coming to ours. We’re all meeting at some race track somewhere or all grouping up to ride together to go watch someone, or just be spectators. Some of the couples are drag racers, some race dirt tracks, some are asphalt racers, and of course we’re all fans of F1, Rally Cars, NASCAR, and World of Outlaws, so we always have some sort of good natured rivalry going on as well.

At our homes everything is casual because we’ve all known each other for a while, and it’s just so relaxing! There’s nothing better than a hot dog, or a burger, a cold beer or a glass of wine, good conversation about every possible topic, and people that care enough to listen. And the jokes! Holy smokes, the guys can get going with them. Sometimes I laugh until I cry.

Even if we have different opinions about things, we all respect each other enough to honor someone else’s thoughts on a subject and either consider changing our viewpoint, or realize that we love each other even though we don’t agree.

It sounds like such a commercial, but to me summer really is good food, good friends, and good times.

What’s your favorite summertime activity?

Don’t forget, every comment is entered to win a GC to Amazon! + a copy of Nina Croft’s July release, Losing Control.

About Beth Rhodes

Beth jumps into life with both feet...or head first. Impulsive and spontaneous to a T, she joined Passionate Critters and never looked back. She loves writing and reading, which made this wonderful group of woman a perfect match for her.

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