10 Paintings of Victorian Bookworms

WARNING: If superfluous giddiness grates on your nerves, cease reading immediately! However, if celebrating small moments with great enthusiasm makes you feel cozily warm inside like a morning cuppa—by all means, read on!

HIP-HIP-HOORAY, ‘tis my book’s birthday!!!!! *tosses confetti glitter in the air*

Lassoed by Marriage

One year ago (on January 1st) my debut novella The Substitute Bride released in The Lassoed by Marriage Romance Collection! Since its release, the collection hit the ECPA Bestseller List and has been read by many a dear reader. A surreal and exciting notion!

To those who have bought the collection and written reviews—THANK YOU! To those who have subscribed here, Liked my Facebook, and sent encouraging messages—THANK YOU! I look forward to sharing more books and Victorian fun with you in future!

Now let’s celebrate The Substitute Bride’s book birthday with 10 Paintings of Victorian Bookworms(All Images Located on Pinterest / Original Sources Unknown)

“An Evening at Home” circa 1888, by Edward John Poynter (British, 1836-1919).

“An Evening at Home” circa 1888, by Edward John Poynter (British, 1836-1919).

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12 Victorian Images for Christmas Crafting

Christmas Victorian FamilyMy childhood was painted with Elmer’s glue and sprinkled with glitter. I have fond memories of threading macaroni necklaces, taking a scrap-booking class, and winning 1st place (exactly one time) at a local art fair.

Although I haven’t decoupaged in years, I still enjoy dabbling in arts and crafts from time to time. Especially around the holidays.

I think my old fashioned sensibilities hearken back to the Victorian notion—pre-Industrial Revolution—of finding joy in making something by hand. In creating, slowly and thoughtfully. Reveling in the process of artistry, as much as the end result.

In that spirit, let’s celebrate the holiday season with 12 Victorian Images for Christmas Crafting! (Click on Each Image for Full Size)

Note: For those who prefer technology to paper mache, feel free to Share, Pin, and Tweet away! This is a No Crafting Shame zone.

Christmas Victorian Lady Star / Source TheGraphic'sFairy.com / Click for Full Size Image

Victorian Lady Christmas Star / Source The Graphic’s Fairy.com / Click Image for Full Size

Craft Idea: Print off these images to make custom, Victorian Christmas cards!

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Around the World in 6 Libraries

Library Quote E.B. WhiteIt should not come as a shock that my favorite Disney princess is Belle from Beauty and The Beast. I think all writers, bookworms, and imaginative sorts are drawn to Belle. I mean, she’s intelligent and quick witted. She reads voraciously. She flies across bookshelves on wheeled ladders with reckless abandon. Her lovable father is a creative inventor and—quite obviously— a Steampunk. (Goggles + Inventor + Steam-powered wood-chipper = Holy Cogsworth! How did I not see this before?!)

However, I think the thing to be most loved and envied about Belle is the manner in which she is wooed by her shaggy prince—with the gift of a library.

Not just any library, my dears. That library. That. Magnificent. Library! The one which causes book-lovers jaws to drop with an audible gasp and dream dreams of having their own Beauty and The Beast library one glorious day. *le sigh*

After writing my novella, The Substitute Bride, I realized my love for Belle and that library had unintentionally infused itself into my Victorian era tale. I have a bookworm heroine, Gwen. A slightly gruff hero, Elliot. And a rather grand library tucked away in an English country manor where they learn to love amidst the aroma of old books.

Therefore, in honor of Belle and Gwen and everything magical that can happen where books reside, let us now venture on a brief journey Around the World in 6 Libraries!

1. The Library of Congress ~ Washington DC, USA

The Library of Congress ~ Washington DC, USA. Image Source: Pixabay CCO PD

The Library of Congress ~ Washington DC, USA. Image Source: Pixabay CCO PD

“There is more treasure in books than in all the pirate’s loot on treasure island.” 

~Walt Disney

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Special Event Update & YouTube Link

And now we momentarily meander from my regular blogging schedule for a special event update!

Lassoed by Marriage Romance Collection

On February 24th, I participated in a Google Hangout On Air Broadcast for a book club at The Greatest Gift & Scripture Supply Store in Pueblo, CO.

During this particular event, I shared the inspiration for my novella, The Substitute Bride, in The Lassoed by Marriage Romance Collectionand talked a little more about my fascination with Steampunk and automatons.

Here’s the YouTube link for those who missed the live event. Enjoy!

SPECIAL EVENT: Lassoed by Marriage Virtual Author Event

Let us meander from my regular blogging schedule, so I may invite you to a special event!Lassoed by Marriage Romance Collection

On Wednesday February 24th, at 12 pm (CST) you are invited to watch a LIVE virtual author event where I shall share the true story behind-the-story of my novella, The Substitute Bride, in The Lassoed by Marriage Romance Collection from Barbour Books.

During the event, you’ll have the opportunity to learn more about me and ask questions.

You can attend live at Google Hangout On Air Broadcast or in person with a book club at The Greatest Gift & Scripture Supply Store located on 505 N. Grand Ave
Pueblo, CO 81003.

I hope to “see” you there!

My YouTube Debut!

Once again this month, we venture merrily away from my regular blogging schedule in order that I might share my YouTube debut! *fictitious confetti rains from the sky*

On January 18th, I participated in my first virtual author event on Google Hangouts. It was quite nerve-wracking, but also quite fun. I spoke to a group at The Vine Bookstore about my novella The Substitute Bride and answered questions about my writing process, creative inspiration, and the Victorian period.

Vine FlyerFor those who were unable to attend in person or watch the event live, thanks to the magic of technology, you can now view the entire chat on YouTube! Enjoy!

SPECIAL EVENT: Lassoed by Marriage Virtual Author Event

And now a brief jaunt from my regular blogging schedule to invite you to a special event!Vine Flyer

I am privileged to have the opportunity to take part in this virtual event!

Here is how it works.

For 9 weeks, on Monday evenings, the authors of The Lassoed by Marriage Romance Collection will be presenting chats for a book club at The Vine Bookstore in Dyer, IN. If you’re in the area, you can attend in person. But anyone else can watch LIVE via Google Hangouts On Air!

My chat kicks off the event this Monday, January 18th at 6:30 pm CST. 

I will be chatting about my Victorian novella The Substitute Bride and answering questions.

Lassoed by Marriage Romance Collection

Please join the event, share this post, and invite friends on the event page!

Event Page: Lassoed by Marriage Virtual Author Event

I hope to see you there!

Ways to Simplify Your Tea Party

Painting-The Tea PartyAmidst the sparkle of fireworks we have welcomed 2016 into our midst in her glistening new gown of promise. While I am quite glad of 2016’s company, her arrival prompts the end of the holiday season. Which means the flurry of cookie-swaps and Christmas themed tea parties have also come to an end.

Part of me is partied out and content to resume the quiet rhythm of ordinary life. The other part, however, soon tires of ordinary. I like extraordinary. Festiveness. I like celebrating, decorating, and dress up. And I hate the feeling that one must wait for the holiday season in order to enjoy those things.

I don’t want to wait an entire year before I have another tea party. And why must I?

Why do we feel compelled to have a “reason” for festivity? As though we require a holiday’s permission before we can indulge in something special. Perhaps it’s because we have legitimate responsibilities, but I think it’s mostly because we make celebrations too complicated.

TableNot every tea party has to have four homemade courses, fifty guests, and a table decorated with all your best china in an attempt to replicate a scene from Downton Abbey. I love fancy, but simplicity is not a plain-Jane substitute. Rather simplicity frees us to enjoy the extraordinary delight of celebration throughout the year.

So let’s not pack merriment away with the tinsel! Instead let’s invite simplicity over for a cuppa.

Ways to Simplify Your Tea Party. 

Combine Paper Ware with Fine China

I love fine china, but unfortunately, it does not get along with dishwashers. Therefore, when I wish to simplify and decrease post-tea-party-clean-up, I combine china pieces with paper ware. Usually I’ll mix porcelain tea cups with paper plates. Not plain white ones that you’d see at a BBQ. You can now find lovely paper plates with designs that match your theme. I often use Punch Studio plates found at my local TJMaxx or Marshall’s.  Continue reading