Fun with Research for Next Release

IMG_1099Saddle up for some Fun with Research on my Next Release!

If you’ve heard me talk about research in the past, you know I consider it a necessary evil for writing.

The problem started in high school. Yeah, I know, you don’t want to go there. Neither do I, but that’s where it started. Remember those dreaded research/term papers? You had to make outlines, notecards, quote
s, bibliographies, works cited pages and the list goes on. The two worst parts for me were the outlines (I still get nauseous thinking about outlining) and research for the notecards. I honestly didn’t mind reading the books for information, but having to make note cards to PROVE that I did was really annoying. It wasn’t so much I had to prove I did the research as the fact that I wasn’t going to use those cards to write the paper. Once I handed them in for the ‘pre-work’ grade, I doubt I looked at them again.

HOWEVER, over the past few years I’ve come to realize I can have fun with research. Hallelujah!

Nowadays my research is much more hands on. I wrote another post about this subject almost two years ago as a guest on Jessica Aspen’s Blog. I wanted to give you an update on my latest research experience – Guest Ranches.

My current WIP (work in progress) will be the first of the new Masters Men series, Master Security. It features Chance Dugan who was introduced in Her Master Match, and Marley Jasper, owner of the Jasper Ranch. (If you need to brush up on the Masters Men, feel free to click here for information on the first Masters Men Series.) I figured if I was going to feature a guest ranch in my book, I should probably know what running one entailed. Cue research.

Okay, so I had to do a little, very little, searching on Google to get started. It didn’t take many keystrokes to find a place to contact. I sent an email to the General Manager of C Lazy U Ranch. It wasn’t long before he responded and we arranged for a call. I sent him some questions ahead of time. His answers weMain Lodge at C Lazy U Ranchre very helpful, but he suggested I really needed to see things for myself and invited me to visit. My niece went with me so when I ran out of questions or forgot to take pictures she could pick up the slack.

So, we went to the ranch and it was amazing. The C Lazy U is a premier guest ranch in the U.S. located in Granby, Colorado. Our cabin was unbelievably comfortable and had fireplaces in both rooms. We went ho
rseback riding and snowshoeing. We joined others in the community area of the main building for lunch, dinner, and breakfast. All the meals were good, but the dinner was definitely outstanding. All of the employees were friendly and welcoming. There must be a requirement that the cowboys are good looking, because they would all look great on a book cover. Also, the female wrangler (that’s her in the picture at the top of the post) who led our trail ride grew up on a dairy farm. If you remember ChancRiding at the C Lazy U Ranche from his cameo appearance in Her Master Match, he grew up on a dairy farm, too. So, now I have a contact to find out more about how a small dairy farm works. Bonus!

The only issue was the C Lazy U is so much more than my heroine could handle as a family guest ranch. It turned out, that wasn’t a problem either, because David Craig, C Lazy U’s General Manager, also arranged for us to visit a nearby family-owned and run guest ranch, the Drowsy Water Ranch. C Lazy U is huge and open year round while Drowsy Water is open from June through mid-September. That is much more likely what my heroine would be able to deal with as a family-owned guest ranch. Even though Drowsy Water wasn’t open right now, Justin Fosha, one of the owners gave us a tour through the knee high snow as well as giving us a better feel of what a family-owned and run guest ranch would entail.

So, if you want to see what all this FUN RESEARCH results in late this spring, you’ll keep an eye out for the first installment of the Master Security series. While I don’t have a final title yet, the working title is WRANGLING DUGAN. If you’d like a little teaser, keep reading. If you like that title, or have a suggestion for a different one, leave a comment.

Chance waited in silence for Marley to continue.

“Early this morning someone broke into the main house.”

The pencil he’d been tapping snapped in two. He stared at her. “The main house as in the one you and your parents live in?”

She shrugged. “It’s just me. My parents moved to Arizona when dad sold the ranch to me. I guess Colorado wasn’t dry enough for them.”

Chance ignored her attempt to break the sudden tension. “They actually got inside? Your security system didn’t go off?”

“Oh, it went off. As soon as they stepped one foot in the kitchen, I pulled the trigger on my father’s old shotgun.”

“You shot them?” He knew his eyes were wide as saucers, but he hadn’t expected that.

“Maybe, I’m not sure if any of the buckshot hit him or not. I aimed at the door’s frame. It’s a ranch. Shotguns are the security system.”

He rubbed his temple again while he tried to come to terms with the image of her facing off with a would-be attacker in her kitchen with a shotgun.

Until next time,

Happy Reading!

Don’t forget to check out Sandra’s most recent release, A Chance Event – A Chain of Love novella.

Review of Sea Breeze by Jennifer Senhaji

Sea Breeze Review by Sandra S. Kerns

First, let me introduce you to author Jennifer Senhaji in her own words.Jennifer's Author Photo

I was born and raised in San Francisco, CA, and have a husband and two children. Music is an addiction. I can often be found in the car, singing along at the top of my lungs to whatever is playing. I work full time, and I split my spare time between family, reading, blogging, and writing. I’m a habitual quoter. Lines from films and TV shows constantly pop into my head—my kids are the only ones that really get it. I’m an only child, and so of course I married a man who is one of ten children. Other than English, I speak Spanish, Moroccan, and a little French. I love to travel, but don’t do enough of it. Reading has been a passion for most of my life and I now love writing. I’m a klutz, and in my own mind, I’m hilarious.

 

Sea Breeze

Want a fast, fun, exciting read? Check out Jennifer Senhaji’s Sea Breeze available now on Amazon just click the book cover to buy it.

I read this book through in one sitting because I was enjoying myself so much. To me this is a story of metamorphosis. Jordan has lived her entire life responsibly because there was no other choice she could see. When an unexpected chance to spread her wings drops in her lap after an emotional life event, she grabs hold and never looks back. Well, maybe once or twice, but she never turns back. She has decided to try new things and a cruise ship is just the place for that. (Have you seen the activities on the ships nowadays?) Anyway, the one thing she isn’t looking for is one of the first she finds, a HOT man. Not only hot, but fun and sweet without being syrupy. Their journey through the Caribbean was so much fun because the author made you feel like you were right there. You could feel the humidity and the ocean breezes. There is romance, a cruise, you visit Puerto Rico, and watch the characters’ voyage through self-discovery. A great read from every perspective.

That’s my take, actually there’s so much more but I don’t want to spoil the fun for you. I do have permission to give you a little excerpt to whet your appetite, but before that here’s a little more insight into the story. Be sure to read all the way through the post. At the end there’s a special prize!

ABOUT SEA BREEZE:

Jordan has never been in love, or been anywhere. Trapped in Vegas, she schleps drinks and dodges losers, while suffering under a burden only she can shoulder. Her life is an endless stretch of blah with no escape.

Until now.

Instead of looking back, she’s sailing forward.

Eric has left his family and friends in San Francisco to travel the world, tending bar on a cruise ship to fund his adventures. He can charm any coed who comes aboard, but Jordan sees right through him.

On the blue cobblestone streets of San Juan, everything changes. Food. Music. Exotic locations. Possibilities. Setting out to discover the world, will Jordan discover herself?

Sometimes, adventure can set you free…

An Excerpt from Sea Breeze

The ship is still in port, so the wind is minimal as I scoot out of my shorts and step into the pool. The water is warm and I dive to the bottom. Back at the surface, I float on my back and gaze up at the blue sky and white puffy clouds above me. My arms fan out around me and I sigh, content. No worries, no responsibilities. No rushing home. My time is finally mine now. Guilt tightens my chest and a tear forms in the corner of my eye. I dive back under the water to wash it away. I couldn’t stop it, no matter how hard I tried. Nothing I did was ever enough.

I swim around for a while, trying to clear my head, and stretching my leg muscles. After all the walking today, I’m bound to be sore tomorrow. After about thirty minutes, I step out of the pool and sink into the hot tub. I rest my head on the ledge and my eyes close on their own.

A while later, an older couple joins me in the steamy water. I smile at them in turn and lean back, taking in the evening sky. Hints of a beautiful sunset are on the horizon. I’ve been soaking for a while now, and my fingertips are all pruned. I smile again at the couple as they exchange a quick kiss, and take my leave. Drying off, I slip back into my shorts. I can’t help flashing back to the moment I shared with Eric. I really wanted him to kiss me, but it’s probably for the best that he didn’t.

Back in my room, I find Kim lounging on her bed, flipping through a magazine.

“Hey, where have you been all day?”

I take a seat on my bed opposite hers. “I went ashore and spent the day in San Juan. It was amazing. What did you do? Did you go ashore?”

“No. I nursed a horrible hangover until about two in the afternoon. By then, it was too late to consider going. I ended up meeting a couple of my friends for Bloody Marys by the pool, and then we went to dinner.”

“Did you have fun last night?”

“We had a blast. You have to come out tonight, Jordan.”

“What’s on the agenda tonight?”

“We’re all going to meet up at Allure around ten. It’s the nightclub here on the ship. Are you in?”

Allure… That’s where Eric works tonight. He said he’d buy me a drink.  “Yeah. I’m in.”

I hope you enjoyed this excerpt from Sea BreezeIf you would like to connect more with Jennifer here are links to her social media and a chance to win a cool prize.

AUTHOR LINKS:

Website: www.jennifersenhajiauthor.com

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/jsenhaji13

Twitter: https://twitter.com/jsenhaji13

Blog: http://jennifersenhaji.blogspot.com

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/jennifersenhaji

Smashwords: https://www.smashwords.com/profile/view/Jsenhaji

Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/author/jennifersenhaji

GIVEAWAY:

Win an eBook copy of Sea Breeze and a $5 Amazon gift card from PageCurl Publishing and Promotion. Leave a blog comment with your idea of a dream vacation to be entered to win. Winner will be announced on PageCurl’s Facebook page a week from today!

 

The Voices are Back!

 

A Little Bit About My Writing Process

BtrFlyBride4smallOkay, so it’s been a while since I posted anything. Apologies. I did let life get away from me for a bit. You understand how it is. We went on vacation, and then I had to get Butterfly Bride out for my readers before Christmas, then the holidays, and deadlines for my next release looming. Well, you get the picture. I was a tad overwhelmed.

What happens when I’m overwhelmed? The voices go away. Yep, you heard me, the voices. No, no, no, I’m not schizophrenic, or delusional. At least, I don’t think I am. Unlike Sheldon, my mother never had me tested. 🙂

I’m talking about my characters. If my characters didn’t talk to me, I wouldn’t have any stories to old housewrite. When my brain gets overwhelmed with STUFF, my characters go into hiding. I try to get them to play, but they won’t. Until I stop, take a breather, relax, and maybe get a little organized, they board up the windows and refuse to come out or even turn on the lights. During those times most of what I write is a waste of time and ends up in the recycle bin on my desktop. Hey, at least I recycle, right?

Anyway, to get me back on track my sister (read – editor) gave me a birthday present that kicked the IMG_0516boards off the windows. (See my new inspiring coffee mug on the messy desk.) My characters started dancing and singing, vying for my attention. What does that mean? I finally started writing things I didn’t have to recycle and I finished the next Masters Men book. Wait! Don’t run over to Amazon yet. I said I finished it. Now we’re working on edits, but it will be out in late February.

So, if you want, copy the pic of my coffee mug. Post it on your desktop, phone, tablet, anywhere you need that little extra inspiration to get moving again. You don’t have to be a writer, either. Hey, the voices can be any one. There are times my characters get shoved aside by the voice of a trainer I used to have and Martin starts asking why I haven’t been exercising lately. Unfortunately, Martin moved back to New Zealand, so he can’t harass me in person anymore. Believe me, he had the accent that could make me work out whether I wanted to or not. That’s why ‘that voice’ has a really cool accent.

Granted, for most people ‘the voices’ are more or less your subconscious trying to tell you something. Even when that’s the case, such as my ex-trainer’s voice, it’s best to listen. It means you really need to do something or at the very least, think about something.  So take a minute to listen to that voice in your head and be cordial. Give it an answer, or better yet, write the answer down because that will help you remember it.

Until next time,

Happy Reading!

Sandra

 

Unexpected Surprises

Don’t you love it when you open your email and get something like the ad below? It’s so cool to have your OWN book (or books) recommended to you. This was definitely a great way to start my busy day, AND inspire me to get finished with the next book due out the end of July!  I posted the entire email here hoping to give the other authors featured a hand with sales as well. Enjoy!

Amazon.com
Your Amazon.com Today’s Deals See All Departments

 

Sandra S Kerns,Are you looking for something in our Suspense Romance eBooks department? If so, you might be interested in these items.
Suspense Romance eBooks
A Daring Proposal (Colorado Dreams and Desires)
A Daring Proposal (Colorado Dreams and Desires)
Sandra S. Kerns
Price: $4.99
Learn more

Add to Wish List

Eenie, Meanie, Minie, No! (The Colorado Skies Series)
Eenie, Meanie, Minie, No! (The Colorado Skies Series)
Sandra S. KernsJoy A. Clintsman
Price: $4.99
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Gathering Clouds (Colorado Dreams and Desires)
Gathering Clouds (Colorado Dreams and Desires)
Sandra S. Kerns
Price: $4.99
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Callaghan's Conundrum (Colorado Skies)
Callaghan’s Conundrum (Colorado Skies)
Sandra S. Kerns
Price: $4.99
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The Butterfly Connection (Colorado Skies)
The Butterfly Connection (Colorado Skies)
Sandra S. Kerns
Price: $4.99
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Dream Stalker (Colorado Skies Book 1)
Dream Stalker (Colorado Skies Book 1)
Joy A. Clintsman
Price: $4.99
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Last Chance for Love - A Masters Men Christmas Story (The Masters Men Series)
Last Chance for Love – A Masters Men Christmas Story
Sandra S. Kerns
Price: $1.99
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Her Master Detective (The Masters Men Series)
Her Master Detective (The Masters Men Series)
Sandra S. Kerns
Price: $3.99
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Rose of Steele (Colorado Skies)
Rose of Steele (Colorado Skies)
Sandra Kerns
Price: $4.99
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Her Master Defender (The Masters Men Series)
Her Master Defender (The Masters Men Series)
Sandra S. Kerns
Price: $3.99
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Her Master of Hearts (The Masters Men Series)
Her Master of Hearts (The Masters Men Series)
Sandra S. Kerns
Price: $3.99
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Innocent Prey
Innocent Prey
Maggie Shayne
Price: $6.15
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Redeeming (PAVAD: FBI Romantic Suspense)
Redeeming (PAVAD: FBI Romantic Suspense)
Calle J. Brookes
Price: $2.99
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The Perfect Hostage (A Super Agent Novella) (Entangled Edge)
The Perfect Hostage (A Super Agent Novella) (Entangled Edge)
Misty Evans
Price: $0.99
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CRIES IN THE NIGHT, A Denver After Dark Romantic Suspense
CRIES IN THE NIGHT, A Denver After Dark Romantic Suspense
Kathy Clark
Price: $4.99
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Extreme Measures
Extreme Measures
Rachel Carrington
Price: $0.99
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Look What Just Arrived!

Paperback Proof of Eenie, Meanie, Minie, No!

photo (2)

I don’t think I will EVER get tired of receiving these in the mail. Opening the box and seeing my book is amazing!

I really love this cover. The background photo is  perfect  for the book. This book will send you back to the land of high school cliques and heartaches and then pull you into the scary reality of the present as Nikki and Joe try to stop a killer.photo (3)

I also want to share the acknowledgement page with you. I know the pic is a little grainy, but I still wanted to share. There were two specific people I wanted to give credit, but also a shout out to those of you who inspire me to keep writing by purchasing my books.

I promise to have the paperback ready soon!