Books Direct Christmas Giveaway – Cash Prizes to be Won!

PRIZES to be won!


Just heard about the great giveaway at Books Direct so here goes for a chance to win some great prizes. Entry options will be added as more donations are received, so check back daily. The giveaway is open internationally and will end on 22 December. Winners will be announced on the Books Direct blog and notified by email. Sponsors are welcome to enter as well.



$80 Amazon gift card or PayPal cash (winner’s choice)

$20 Amazon gift card or PayPal cash (winner’s choice)

$10 Amazon gift card or PayPal cash (winner’s choice)

$5 Amazon gift card or PayPal cash (winner’s choice)

Prizes will increase as more donations are received.


Bargain and Free Ebooks – Today Only!

Wishing You All the Special Blessings of this Glorious Season But if you are looking for a little escape from the madness try one of these AWESOME DEALS from these BESTSELLING AUTHORS 4

Offer Good Only Today 2

Below the books are linked to the Amazon site. All sites including Barnes and Noble, iTunes and Kobo are linked on Romantic Picks posting!















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Make sure you check out ROMANTIC PICKS for all the authors’ links!

We wish you and your family a happy and safe holiday season!

Enjoy your books!


The Not Too Perfect Heroine

Take Five Authors

When I was fresh out of high school, my mother made an interesting observation about a friend of minee_o_vento_levou_-_rhett_e_scarlett. ‘Trouble with Kathy,’ she said, ‘she’s just too perfect.’ Now Kathy was a truly lovely person, sort of girl who taught Sunday school, made friends with homeless people, considered a glass of wine a walk on the wild side and discovered all kinds of intimate details about people I’d known for years and never bothered to ask. And she was popular – I’ve no idea, in fact, why she was hanging out with me. But would I want her as a heroine?  Maybe, if I was writing a certain kind of romance. Then again, possibly not. After all, wouldn’t most of us want to be or spend time with Scarlett O’Hara in Gone With The Wind rather than the saintly Melanie Wilkes?  Yes, Scarlett’s selfish, wilful, and likely…

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Are you in the mood for a little romance?

Fab. We are too! 

Today we’ve three offers we wanted you to hear about.


For our Australian friends, Looking for La La, How to Survive Your Sisters and To Catch A Creeper have all been chosen by Amazon for a Black Friday Sale. Ends tomorrow. We were thrilled this morning to wake up to find Looking for La La at #3 in the Aussie Kindle charts and #1 in Cozy Mystery with To Catch a Creeper racing up behind her!

UK and US

For our UK and US readers from today until 30th November we have Million Dollar Question on Kindle Countdown at 99 pence and 99 cents.

Just as a huge financial scandal throws New Yorker, Olivia Wheeler, from wealth and success to bankruptcy and shame, struggling impoverished single-mother Rosie Dixon wins an unexpected million pounds. Good luck? Bad luck? Who can tell? Both women have more in common than they realize. While Olivia struggles to survive her humiliations, fleeing broke and homeless to London, shy unassuming Rosie discovers sudden riches arrive with their own mega-load of problems. 

And finally for everybody everywhere

the Authors XP Romance Giveaway

Win Up To 25+ Romance eBooks!

(2) Grand Prize “Gift Baskets” of ALL eBooks!
(25+) Winners of Individual eBooks (randomly selected titles)

Ends this Monday coming 28th!

Good luck to all!

Pam and Lorraine (Ellie Campbell)


Just close your eyes for a whole new world of books

Anyone for audio?

Take Five Authors

800px-ernesthareradiosipConfession: I read very little these days. That is, I read a great deal for research purposes, and I read far too many newspapers articles (especially this year, when the politics everywhere has been so intense and dramatic!) – but as for sitting down with a novel … sorry, but I can’t remember the last time I did that!

Shocking? Well yes. Writers should read, shouldn’t they?

I agree, absolutely. My problem is, since I started writing novels myself, I’ve found my concentration span has shortened immensely when it comes to reading other people’s books. If a novel is fantastic, it makes me want to run off instantly and get back to my own writing – in other words, I find good writing inspiring. If something is poor, or just doesn’t catch my interest … well, frankly, life’s too short to waste.

headphones-1088732_1280However, I do get through twenty to thirty novels…

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Balance in the Life of A Writer

I was at a party once where a well-established mystery novelist told me she was lucky if she managed to write for an hour or two a day, the bulk of her schedule being consumed with book promotions, Twitter, Facebook, newsletters, her blog. Seems that many writers are performing the same high-wire act. Without a social media presence, without Bookbub, 99 cent promotions, Goodreads competitions, mailing lists, and all that ongoing effort, chances are that even the best-crafted novel will languish, lost and crying out unnoticed, in the wasteland of Amazon’s millions of fiction books. Well, boo-hoo, I can almost hear you say. After all, this isn’t high school English – no hoary old professor is forcing us to come up with the next Ellie Campbell book. And juggling time is nothing new for writers. Most of the literary greats had to fit in their artistic endeavors with full-time jobs, squeezing precious hours out of the early dawn or burning the midnight oil.

But still I wistfully think – wouldn’t it be nice to get a sense of balance? And have a life beyond the laptop? Are we all being forced to multi-task way beyond our natural capacity, checking our emails while sitting on the toilet while brushing our teeth? Lifting your nose from your mesmerizing screen only to discover six hours have vasalesnished, the husband has walked in the door and dinner is still a frozen chicken and a bag of groceries lying unpacked on the counter along with the breakfast dishes. We all have responsibilities shrieking for our attention: children, elderly parents, pets that need feeding or walking, even horses, (some of us). We have bodies that ought to be exercised more, friends that are feeling neglected, the guilty sense that however we spend our precious time, there is so much out there being left undone…

Read more at Take Five Authors blog


Right now for this week’s fabulous competition.  Too good to let it go by.  It’s the humor giveaway at Authors XP and it runs through to Nov 7th and includes our very own Looking for La La. We would love our blog followers or newsletter subscribers to win one or more of these fabulous novels.

Win Up To 20+ Humor eBooks!

(2) Grand Prize Kindle “Gift Baskets” of ALL eBooks!
(20+) Winners of Individual eBooks (randomly selected titles)
Nov. 1-7

 One last thing we heard about and again it’s an offer to good to miss – Count the Roses by Jackie Weger’s novel and it’s free until 5th Nov. Check it out below

Count The Roses 2nd imageAMAZON EXCLUSIVE
First time offered FREE

“Fantastic.Really a Wonderful read…Just a job well done.” ~ avp

“The author’s descriptions of the bayou and New Orleans are fantastic. I loved the characters–all of them.” ~ avp

Travel with Jennifer DeWitt from New Orleans—that humid, high-stepping city of music and magic on the Mississippi River to the depths Louisiana swamps where real life happens. And a sexy Cajun just happens to live.

November 2- 5, 2016
Print edition on Amazon
Print edition on Barns & Noble

Learning from the master

Anyone up for a writing course?

Creating characters: do babies count?

Creating characters. Do babies count? Thanks Jenny!

Win up to 18 Novels in the General Fiction Giveaway!

Just a quickie today as we can’t let this week go by without letting you guys know about this fabulous giveaway.  Free to enter!

Win Up To 18 General/Womens/Historical Fiction Novels!

(2) Grand Prize Kindle “Gift Baskets” of ALL eBooks!

(18) Winners of Individual eBooks (randomly selected titles)

Keeping our fingers crossed for y’all!

Pam and Lorraine (Ellie Campbell)

Into the wilds of Mongolia

Well, I promised I’d report back on my Mongolian trekking trip and, yes, it was quite the fantastic adventure.  From Ulaan battar, the capital, we travelled 2 and a half days overland, passing Erdene Zuu Monastery along the way.img_6149

The first two nights we stayed in tourist camps where we were accommodated in gers (yurts) and and bathed in a communal washing blocks, our last showers for quite a while.  This was our pink palace with wood-burning stove.  We also got entertainment the second night – you haven’t lived until you’d heard famed Mongolian throat singing.mongolia-pink-gerThe next day we arrived at our horse camp in the Zavkhan province, 1,104 Km from the capital. We had a day to get used to our chosen mounts and from there our sturdy, tough and half-wild Mongolian horses took us over 120 miles (200+ km), through bogs and rivers, across the wide open steppes and over snowy mountain passes, a lot of which looked surprising like Colorado.  Only without the hikers and joggers.
mongolia-horses-grazingWe visited nomadic families in their gers, tried such local delicacies as milk curds and mares’ milk vodka brewed in a home-made still. Yum!mongolia-ger

We slept in tents, camped by rivers and lakes, basked in gorgeous sunsets and woke to a thick layer of morning frost.  Zavkahn has some of the coldest winter temperatures in Mongolia, having been recorded as low as as low as −52.9 °C (−63.2 °F) but luckily this was September and we only had one day of snow.mongolia-rainbowFood, you ask?  It was mutton for dinner.  Yep, every night.  With vegetable curry for the non-meat eaters.  Our wranglers killed a sheep on the first day of our trip and its carcase provided our main meal with nary a bit wasted.  Here it’s prepared with hot rocks. mongolia-lamb-dinnerEverything cooked on an open fire or portable stove, even our delicious bread.mongolia-stove17 days of no technology, bathing in chilly rivers (for those so inclined) and rustic bathroom facilities.toilet-mongoliaWe met bands of roaming horses, got chased by a jealous stallion, heard wolves howl, encountered eagles, marmots, deer, and of course herds of sheep, goats, and yaks.  In 2005, Zavkhan was home to 2,1 million head of livestock, among them 1,03 million sheep,  861,000 goats, 107,000  cattle and yaks, 101,000 horses and 6,300 camels (of the two-humped Bactrian variety).  What didn’t we see?  City lights, roads, or tourists.mongolia-camelsAnd I fulfilled my dream of galloping across the Mongolian steppes,  thanks to my small but feisty ex-racehorse that I christened Snowflake.  Stopping was a different challenge.14344869_10154144625392182_7645542630260860595_nAnd then when our adventure was done, they turned the horses loose, to fend for themselves, wandering free in this unfenced land that seemed to stretch forever.  And we returned to civilization, thankful to Zavkhan Trekking for organizing an amazing trip.