Romance Box Set: The Good, The Bad and The Ghostly

Just in time for Halloween, a box set that mixes cowboys and ghosts!

Today's spotlight is on The Good, The Bad and The Ghostly, a box set made for those who love some paranormal with their western romance.

What do you get when you mix cowboys with ghosts?

A collection of 8 stand-alone amazing stories from the Old West with haunts of every variety.

Get your love of alpha cowboys on and feed your addiction for the bizarre--sometimes spooky--world and rush to download The Good, The Bad and The Ghostly.

Bestselling and Award-winning authors are pleased to offer this "different" romance box set and save you more than 75% on the price if the books sold separately.

Titles and Authors

If you click on the author's name, you'll be taken to her Amazon Author page where you can learn more about her and her books.

Visit their Facebook Group page.

Wild, Wild Ghost by Margo Bond Collins
With everyone she loves in the grave, Ruby specializes in the dead.

Comes An Outlaw by Keta Diablo
An outlaw returns to his childhood home to find his parents and brother dead, and the lovely widow in grave danger.

Long A Ghost, and Far Away by Andrea Downing
Ghosts are restless souls, and Lizzie Adams is one of them. How many lives will she get to find the perfect love?

A Ghostly Wager by Blaire Edens
Even a skeptical detective needs a little otherworldly help.

How the Ghost Was Won by Erin Hayes
There are ghost stories. And there are ghost legends.

McKee's Ghost by Anita Philmar
The ghost living in his house might have saved him from an unhappy marriage and brought him the girl of his dreams but when his ex- fiancé returns, the same spirit turns his life upside down.

A Ride Through Time by Charlene Raddon
P.S.I. Agent Burke Jameson wants to find out if Eagle Gulch, Colorado has genuine ghosts. But he found far more than he expected, including a horse ride that could change his life forever

The Ghost and the Bridegroom by Patti Sherry-Crews
She's sent west to solve a case. What she finds will change her forever.

Buy The Good, The Bad and The Ghostly from Amazon Kindle.

Takeaway Truth

If you're looking for romance that's different, try The Good, The Bad and The Ghostly for some cowboys, romance, and things that go bump in the night.

Release Day for Love, Christmas

Do we Love, Christmas?

Indeed we do! Today was release day for our Love, Christmas Romance Collection, and it was frantic, fun, amazing, motivating, and rewarding--all the things a book release should be thanks to our hard-working authors in this holiday romance box set.

If you want to read the #1 Holiday Romance on Amazon Kindle--yes, that's right--we are:

• #1 in Kindle Store > Kindle eBooks > Literature & Fiction > Genre Fiction > Holidays
• #1 in Books > Literature & Fiction > Genre Fiction > Holidays

then here are the buy links for Amazon and the other ebook sellers.


Excited? You Bet

We are SO excited! Thank you, Magic of Books Tour, Xpresso Book Blitz Tour, and Book Partners in Crime Promotions.

Another big thank you to all the early readers and reviewers, all the bloggers who participated, all those who tweeted and retweeted, and FB posters too.

Takeaway Truth

It takes a village--for an ebook collection to hit #1 on release day.

2016 Emma Merritt Writing Contest

The 2016 Emma Merritt Writing Contest, sponsored by the San Antonio Romance Authors, also known as SARA, is now accepting entries.

I remember when I met Emma Merritt many years ago. She was well-known in romance circles and often spoke at workshops and conferences. She was often funny and seemed to never meet a stranger. I love the fact that this contest is named in honor of her.


The 2016 Emma Merritt Competition is opened to published and unpublished authors. Each entry must be an unpublished work – it cannot be published or under contract in any form or format, not in digital or print prior to the entry deadline.
November 30, 2016, midnight, Central time zone – Deadline for submissions. Contest Closes.

Categories and Final Judges

Piya Campana, Senior Editor, Harlequin Super Romance
Jill Marsal of the Marsal Lyon Literary Agency

Tara Cuskaden, Editorial Director, Entangled Select-Otherworlds
Andrea Somberg, Harvey Klinger Agency

Patience Bloom, Senior Editor, Harlequin Suspense;
Marisa Corvisiero of the Corvisiero Literary Agency

Tara Gavin, Executive Editor, Kensington Publishing Corp.
Robin Haseltine, Senior Editor, Entangled

Angela James, Editor in Chief, Carina Press
Sara Megibow, KT Literary, LLC

Women’s Fiction:
Susan Litman, Senior Editor, Harlequin Special Editions
Danielle Marshall, Editorial Director, Lake Union Publishing, an imprint of Amazon Publishing

Raela Schoenherr, Acquiring Editor, Bethany House/Baker
Cori Deyoe of 3 Seas Literary Agency

Young Adult (YA):
Susan Chang, Senior Editor, Tor/Tor Teen
Louise Fury of the Jenny Bent Literary Agency


November 30, 2016, midnight, CST.

Entry Fee

USD $35.00 via PayPal.

For more information, visit the contest page of their website. You may also contact Laura or Suanne at saramerritt.coord @

Takeaway Truth

This is a reputable contest that is well-known. Take a chance and enter.

Save Time on Social Media with Twittimer

If you are short of time but want to maintain an online social media presence, Twittimer will become your best friend.

My friend Mimi Barbour told me about Twittimer. (Thanks, Mimi!)

(Note: This post was originally published on Writing Hacks, my free newsletter for working writers. If you'd like articles like this as soon as they are published, subscribe to Writing Hacks: Tips about the Art, Craft, and Business of Writing to make life easier for writers.)

Twittimer, a website that enables you to schedule social media posts or tweets in advance, is very easy to use. You can schedule a few tweets in advance or upload a CSV file with hundreds of tweets. When you upload a file, you can go back in and add an image to each tweet if you wish. (I always do.)

Once you upload a file, you can just change the dates and use the same file next month. Or, you can go to your Archived Tweets and just schedule them to publish again if that's easier for you.

You can also auto-tweet the same tweet on a regular schedule using their Timetables feature.

Remember I said you could schedule social media posts or tweets? Well, that's right. Twittimer isn't just for tweets. You can schedule Facebook and Linked In posts. You can have multiple Twitter, Facebook, and Linked In accounts too.

Twittimer offers a free level of service and paid plans. Check out the Plans here. I could see how this would make an online presence easier so I chose the lowest-priced level of service and paid for 6 months up front which saves 15% over the $4.99 month by month plan.

If you want to learn more before signing up, just read the FAQ and the Getting Started Guide to learn the basics.

Takeaway Truth

I love Twittimer because it has saved me so much time. So here's a big kiss and a hug to the folks at Twittimer.

If you have a question you can't find an answer for about Twittimer, email me, and I'll try to help.

Xpresso Book Tour for Love, Christmas

Love, Christmas Boxed Set
Pre-order now. Releases: Oct. 18, 2016.
Genres: Adult, Romance
♫♪Put a song in your heart with 20 all-new Christmas Romances from NY Times, USA Today, and national best-selling authors.
Each brand-new title is inspired by a Christmas carol and will lift your spirits and bring on the holiday cheer.♫♪

We Need a Little Christmas by Leanne Banks – Can a handsome cynic become a Christmas believer?
Frosty the Snowman by Mimi Barbour – Stranded in an Alaskan snowstorm, strangers Hali and Terry are forced to rely on each other for survival.
Last Christmas by Joan Reeves – Annabelle gave him her heart, but Rick threw it away. He wants redemption, she wants revenge.
Holly Jolly Christmas by Mona Risk – Pregnant at 18. Adoption would save the baby’s future but may cost her the man she loves.
Do You Hear What I Hear? by Patricia Rosemoor – Live-in-lovers Shelley and Jake are now in a cold war of their own over Christmas.
White Christmas by Rebecca York – Was she in a coma, or was she in a Christmas fantasy?
So This is Christmas by Denise Devine – He was her child nemesis, now he’s her best friend forever.
Grown Up Christmas List by Donna Fasano – All she wants for Christmas is to feel safe… then she meets her guardian angel.
Blue Christmas by the Sea by Traci Hall – Alone for Christmas, Tamsyn helps mystery writer Evan find his mojo–love is a gift neither can refuse.
Santa Baby by Taylor Lee – Lily’s only hope was that this time, he wouldn’t be able to find her.
Let It Snow by Stephanie Queen – A stranger and a snow storm on Christmas Eve create the ultimate test for Dane & Shana.
Merry, Did You Know? by Jennifer St. Giles – Can a Christmas Miracle change the future of a woman who doesn’t believe in love and a man who can’t love again?
O Christmas Tree by Alicia Street – Can Piper convince Cody to let go of his painful past and embrace the hope of Christmas and possibly love?
Sleigh Ride by Katy Walters – Miss Sophia Vale faces poverty. Enter the Earl of Breconbridge, renowned as a rake hell with a conscience.
Deck the Hearts by Rachelle Ayala – Can Holly’s jolly Christmas spirit help Grinch Gordon Gills save the town of Christmas Creek?
Silver Bells by Jacquie Biggar – Can a Christmas wish bring two stubborn souls together and give a little girl the gift she wants?
Hark the Herald Angel Falls by Michele Hauf – To earn her halo, angel Merit must convince the person who holds her earthly soul in limbo–her husband–to stop loving her.
Little Drummer Boy by Dani Haviland – How could a mere drummer boy help those stranded in the worst winter storm of the 18th century?
I’ll Be Home For Christmas by Nancy Radke – When former a former Navy SEAL plucks a woman from the Mediterranean Sea, he discovers a fighter tougher than he.
Santa Claus is Coming to Town by Cynthia Cooke – A big city girl reunites with a small town boy–magic. A Santa in need of an elf–Christmas magic.


Love Christmas Excerpt by Leanne Banks

I hope you have been enjoying the Sneak Peeks of the Love, Christmas Romance Collection.

This collection of 20 never before published novellas will be available October 1 for pre-order.

For a limited time, the collections will be only 99cents!

This week bestselling author Leanne Banks is sharing Chapter 1 of her novella in the collection, We Need a Little Christmas.

Excerpt, We Need A Little Christmas
by Leanne Banks

Chapter 1
Unedited Version

Dedicated to David Hogan and in special memory of Cristy and Grandpa.

“Everyone wants something from me,” Justin Dane Burgess muttered as he looked at all the requests on his desk. His retail company was busy enough this time of year without the requisite donation aspect of the holiday season.

His assistant, Francine Thomas said, “You don’t have to contribute to all of them. You’re very generous.”

“You know it’s Christmas. I don’t make appearances, so I make donations to keep Frank Fashions and Home Goods in a good light to our customers.” he asked.

“Or, because you’re generous and have a good heart,” Francine said.

“I’m not sure I agree with either of those,” he said and signed several more checks.

“I must ask you about one charity,” she said, clearly reluctant.

He looked at her with a doubtful expression. “Yes?”

Francine smiled. “That’s all you needed to say,” she said.

“Ms. Thomas” he said. “I need more information.”

“Many of the charities have requested your attendance at special functions,” she began.

“Not interested in special functions,” he said.

Francine nodded. “True, but I thought you might make an exception.”


“Well, she just seems so nice and earnest. I don’t think she’s trying to win your heart. She just wants your presence at her event to increase its visibility.”

“Hmm. So she got to you? It happens at least once a year,” he said, signing another check.

“She gives coats to the homeless. She has given several off her own back,” Francine said.

“Hmm. What an opportunity for great press for her charity,” he said.

Francine sighed. “With all due respect, sir, you’re too bitter for your own good sometimes.”

Justin glared at his assistant, but she didn’t waiver or wither. It was one of the things he liked about his long-time assistant. “Are you saying I’m acting old, cranky and scrooge-like?”

“Stuck in your ways, sir,” she said, pursing her lips and shaking her silver blonde head at him.

“I’m not a public person,” he reminded her. “I hire people for that.”

“Everyone needs to step outside their comfort zone every now and then,” Francine said.

“And how have you done that?” he asked, turning the question on her because it was easier.

“I’m taking rap line-dancing classes,” she said and lifted her chin. “What are you doing?”

Justin blinked. The image of his senior silver-haired secretary participating in a rap line-dance nearly fried his brain.

“Well?” Francine said expectantly.

“I don’t know what to say,” he said.

“Of course you don’t,” she said. “Because you’re stuck in a rut.”

Justin wouldn’t let just anyone speak to him in such a way, but Francine was one woman he trusted. “Leave the invite on my desk. I’ll look at it tomorrow morning. I have another phone conference tonight.”

Francine frowned. “Are you sure you can’t take a quick visit tonight with Ms. Johansen?”

“Absolutely not,” Justin and strode to his office. Francine meant well and she was extremely trustworthy, but Justin understood himself and humanity.

Everyone had always wanted something from him. Today was no different.


Lilly Johansen stepped inside the downtown office building and smiled at the security person. “I’m here to see Mr. Burgess.”

The security woman rang someone else and nodded. “Fifth floor,” she said and nodded toward a bank of elevators.
Books are Magical!

Excitement climbed with each passing floor. Lilly clenched her pink gloved hands together. The doors opened and she stepped into a lobby where a silver-haired woman resided over a desk. Lilly knew this was Francine, the gate-keeper.

Lilly smiled again. “You must be Francine Thomas. Thank you for your responses to me.”

Francine pursed her lips. “I’m sorry, but Mr. Burgess wasn’t receptive to your invitation. He will give your charity a donation, but he’s adamant about making personal appearances. If you’ve noticed, you can’t find any photos of him on the web. He’s very private.”

Lilly nodded. “May I wait here a little while just in case he changes his mind?”

Francine looked at her sympathetically. “You can, but I’m quite sure he won’t meet with you.”

Lilly sighed. “I’ll give it a shot,” she said and sank down on her chair, loosening her coat and removing her gloves. She leaned her head back and closed her eyes.

A vision flooded through her. A long time ago, there was a young woman and a toddler on the street in the snow. The young woman had been her mother.

Lilly remembered the sensation of bitter cold. She remembered how her mother, thin from disease, had hugged her tight.

Lilly remembered her stomach growling with hunger as the snow swirled around them. “We’ll be fine,” her mother said. “You’ll be fine.” Her mother rubbed her shoulders. “We’ll be warm and fed in no time.”

How? Where? Lilly recalled, shivering, hoping.

Her mother pulled them into an alley and under the ledge of a building entrance. “Just rest,” her mother said. “We’ll be fine.”

Lilly’s eyes opened. Her stomach squeezed tight. She glanced around the office. Francine had left. The lights outside the office were dimmed. No sign of Mr. Burgess.

Sighing, Lilly rose and buttoned her coat and pulled on her gloves. Perhaps, she should make a list of donors to ask to attend the charity event with her. Mr. Burgess had been her first and only choice, so…


Justin finished his teleconference then checked his messages. Nothing that couldn’t wait until tomorrow. He shrugged on his coat and noticed the guilt-inducing paper message from Francine. Ms. Johansen was here. Wish you would reconsider.

Justin crumpled the piece of paper and tossed it into the trash. He wouldn’t be manipulated into attending a charity event just because.

As he rode down the elevator, however, he did feel a smidge of guilt. He hated himself for it, but it was there. He ordered his car delivered from the garage.

Taking a deep breath to move on, he stepped outside the building into the chilly night. Snow and sleet fell. The ice felt like needles. Midwest winters were unforgiving. He lifted the hood of his black cashmere wool coat knowing he had another just like it in his closet at home if he ruined this one.

The Jeep arrived at the curb and the driver handed him his key. “Have a good night, sir.”

He glanced across the street and spotted a young blonde woman giving her coat to an elderly woman. He stood, unwillingly fascinated.

A second later, he saw the young woman remove her gloves and place them on the elderly woman’s hands.

Justin forced himself to look away, but his determination didn’t last. He glanced back. The older woman shuffled away.

The younger woman stared after her and hugged her arms around herself. Justin decided the young chick could call a car service. Uber was only a text away.

He turned away and got into his car, then gave into the urge to glance across the street one last time. Unable to see either woman, he searched the street from one end to the other.

He finally spotted a woman down on the curb and felt a clench in his gut. He could call emergency or he could help.

Justin reluctantly made a U-turn to check on the younger woman. She wasn’t moving. Stopping beside her, he got out and looked down. “You’re not okay,” he said, seeing that her eyes were closed. “Hello? Hello?”

Sighing, he picked her up and carefully put her in the backseat of his car. He couldn’t leave her out in the elements waiting for an ambulance. But now what should he do with her?

About Leanne Banks

Leanne Banks is a national #1 best-selling author with over 50 romance novels to her credit. Leanne was born and raised in the wonderful town of Roanoke, Virginia. Growing up in “the star city of the south” had a huge impact on her outlook and her writing. Her B.S. in Psychology only qualifies her to treat fictional characters and she began writing when her two children were very young. Leanne believes in the transforming power of love, so writing romance novels comes naturally to her. Website * Facebook.

Takeaway Truth

Just a couple of weeks longer, and you can have this amazing Christmas Romance Collection. I'll post the buys links as soon as they are available.

Is Romance Only For the Young?

The Trouble with Love by Joan Reeves
Amazon Kindle & Other Ebook Sellers
Have you noticed that most romance novels are peopled by the young and beautiful?

Yes, as my husband often says, I’m a master of stating the obvious.

Sure, traditionally-published novels usually starred those under thirty-five--actually under thirty would be more accurate. In fact, an editor once said to an author I know: “Make your heroine twenty-three years old and the CEO of a company.”

I swear that is the absolute truth. Now, I don’t know about you, but I don’t know too many 23-year-old CEOs.

The point is that traditional publishing had this idea that readers were all in their twenties, and those young women didn’t want to read about anybody much older than they were. (Is it any wonder so many authors happily deserted traditional publishers and embraced indie authorship?)

The Truth

The truth is that there are far more millions of romance readers over thirty than under it. In fact, there are older readers hungry for romance novels with older heroines.

Recently, I received a comment on my mailing list sign-up form that made that statement. The reader had just finished Old Enough to Know Better, my romance with the heroine turning fifty and in love with a younger man.

In that romantic comedy, Stormy is an older woman, and her soul mate just happens to be a younger man, Sean Butler. Sean has all he can do to woo Stormy who obstinately refuses to become involved with him—even though she’s half in love with him anyway.

In the end, he prevails. I don’t want to spoil the ending in case you haven’t read this book, but he gives her a pendant with an engraving that sums up Stormy’s attitude about finding love.

The reader loved the book (her words) and wanted to read more books like it. I guess I've lived llong enough to know that there is no age limit on romance and love--and sex!

In most of my books, I have a secondary romance with an older couple in the spotlight. In The Trouble With Love, shown above, the heroine's mother rediscovers love after a disastrous youthful marriage--that means a torrid sexual relationship too.
Bringing Sexy back--1 book at a time!

To some, the idea of romance and sex for those below forty makes them uneasy. I think pop culture has created the idea that it's ludicrous when in actuality, sex has no age limits--only health limits.

Maybe that's because we all have a self-image embedded in the brain that doesn’t age. I think that’s why you are startled when you walk down the street and catch your reflection in a store window. Ever done that? Ever thought, “My God, I look just like my mother!”

Shake It Up

I love writing about two people who find each other in life. There’s romance, sex, passion, and, in the end, commitment. But, I also love shaking things up a bit. I often throw in a secondary romance between people of a certain age, like I said above in The Trouble With Love.

In Still The One, the main love story was Burke and Ally. Burke’s grandfather and Ally’s grandmother were scheming matchmakers who were also in love and having an affair after meeting on a cruise ship. Yes, they talked about sex! Oh, horrors. Seventy-something people talking sexily. What’s the world coming to?

Over the Hill? Nope!

So if you’re older than 30—or 40, 50, 60, or beyond—don’t despair. The road of life is long and offers love and romance—and, yes, sex too—every step of the way. You can fall in love, and you can read about women and men your age falling in love.

In this new age of publishing, authors aren’t restricted by arbitrary age guidelines. We can write all kinds of stories—even romance novels with older lovers.

Love at any age is amazing, intense, breathtaking, and wonderful. When you’re older, that’s still true—sometimes all those feelings are magnified.

Takeaway Truth

In “The Man in Lower Ten,” Mary Roberts Rinehart wrote: “Love is like the measles. The older you get, the worse the attack.”

Now that is the stuff of romantic comedy, and exactly the kind of book I love to write.


What do you think about lovers older than their 20s? Leave a comment with your email address to be entered in a giveaway for a free audio book copy of The Trouble With Love. Giveaway closes at midnight on 10/16. Winner notified by email.

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