Monday, August 24, 2015

Cover Reveal for Wedding Date for Hire!

Hi, all!

I'm so thrilled to be able to share my cover for my upcoming book:

Wedding Date for Hire!

To celebrate my cover reveal, I'm having a little Twitter Contest to help spread the word.

If you'd like to join in, tweet (or RT) my book cover any way you'd like TODAY ONLY and you'll automatically be entered to win some fun prizes!

I'll be picking THREE lucky tweeters.
Prizes are
  • 1) $25 GC to Amazon or Barnes & Noble
  • 2) $5 GC to Amazon or B&N
  • 3) Any ebook from my backlist

Just be sure to include @jennifershirk in your tweet so I know to enter you!

Winners will be announced via Twitter tomorrow (8/25) morning.
Good luck!
In the meantime, here is my cover:
Maddie McCarthy is single, between jobs, and (oh, the shame) lives with her mother. To make matters worse, she's the maid of honor for her sister's wedding, and desperately needs a date. Then she sees her salvation—Match Made Easy, a service for women in Maddie’s exact position. If she can't find a boyfriend, she'll do the next best thing...

Hire one.

Trent Montgomery isn't actually part of Match Made Easy. He's just doing a favor for his cousin, but one look at the blonde who hired him, and he's totally hooked. Now Maddie thinks that the attraction sizzling between them is just “part of the package.” And Trent is running out of time to prove to her that her date-for-hire might just be her happily-ever-after...

What do you think of the cover? I think it's really cute!

Monday, August 17, 2015

A Healthy Recipe and some News!

Hi, all!

It seems like once a month is about how often I'll be posting here.
But I wanted to share a few things with you:

1) Had a BLAST at the RWA convention.
One of the things that is so cool is meeting people you interact with online on a daily or weekly basis and then putting an actual face and body with that name. There are REAL people out there! Fancy that. LOL

2) I'm taking my health kick up a notch and have been recently doing a program called PiYo--which is a combination of Pilates and Yoga. Now, I'll be honest. I hate Pilates and I hate Yoga. But I LOVE this workout. It helps me work on flexibility in a fun way. I feel really great!

3) I've been eating a lot of granola with Greek yogurt, so I decided to make my own granola because I often wished certain ingredients were in what I was having. Well, lucky you, I'm sharing my kick-butt recipe. I will even snack on it by the handful.

6 cups organic rolled oats
1/3 c brown sugar
1/3 c maple syrup
1/2 tsp salt
1 TBsp vanilla
1/2 c coconut flakes
1/2 c craisins
1TBsp grapeseed oil
1/2 c dried apricots (diced)
1/4 c wheat germ
1/4c dried apple chips
1/4 cup chia seeds
1/2 c sprouted pumpkin seeds
1/2 c sprouted sunflower seeds

Preheat oven to 325
In a microwave glass bowl, combine sugar, syrup, oil, salt and vanilla. Microwave for about a minute or so until sugar dissolved. Combine with rolled oats until well-coated and add half of coconut. Spread evenly onto sprayed baking sheets in a single layer. Bake about 25-30 min, stirring every 5 min or so until oats are lightly golden.
Remove from oven and cool slightly for 5-10 min. Add fruit, seeds and rest of coconut. When completely cool, store in tight container.

4) Lastly, I finally have a release date for
     October 12, 2015!!!


Actually, I just received my cover and will reveal it here next Monday, AUGUST 24TH!! (Newsletter subscribers will see it on Sunday)

It's awesome!
Because I'm so excited, I will be having a little TWITTER promo to go along with it NEXT MONDAY.
Very easy. Every time you tweet my cover, you'll be entered for a chance to win some prizes. I will pick THREE WINNERS. (Details next week!)
1: $25 Amazon or BN GC
2: $5 Amazon or BN GC
3:An Ebook of any of my backlist titles


And that's all from me.
See you next week!!

Monday, July 20, 2015

RWA Bound!

Happy Monday and long time no post!

Well, construction on the house is complete. Sort of.

It was a bit nightmarish to say the least--hardwood floor refinishing took 3 times as long as it should have and the finish began to peel the next day, if that gives you any idea, but all good right now. Or I should say good enough!

Now we're still waiting on the powder room and guest bath renovations and we'll be set. Until the next house project! LOL

In other news, I'm completing the last (hopefully last) set of edits for WEDDING DATE FOR HIRE and then I'll be off to New York City for the annual RWA convention!
It's been a few years since I've gone but I really feel it's time to be with some colleagues, hear what's going on with the industry and get my act in gear.

I'm so extra excited! And here is why:
1) it's NYC
2) I'm going to meet my editor
3) I get to see meet some of my critique partners
4) I get to party with fellow Entangled authors (thank you Entangled for generously supplying food and drink)
5) I got invited to a Montlake Romance author party too (I'm wearing my swanky black jumpsuit to that!)
6) I'm looking forward to a recharge with my writing and also attending some great seminars
7) Weather looks great for walking around


Still need to pack. Still need to finish my edits.

It's going to be a busy week. But good busy. :)

Will anyone be going to RWA? If so, we need to meet!

Monday, June 15, 2015

Get me out of here!

Happy Monday, all!

Well, construction has started in my house to repair the ceiling, floors, walls, etc... from the toilet leak. I've moved so much junk around, I'm running out of places to put it. Definitely time to give some stuff away.

I can barely breathe from the junk all around me, the dust, and the dog going crazy whenever the workers come over. Lord, give me strength and...

Get me out of here!!!

In fact, as soon as I get myself together, I am getting out of here. I need to do some errands and then I think I'm going to slink on over to the library and try to get some writing in.

In other news...

**I just celebrated my 20th Wedding Anniversary last week. Yes, I was married when I was ten.

**I got last minute Taylor Swift concert tickets for me and my daughter this past Saturday. We had so much fun!

**Prepared brunch for my husband's family for my mother-in-law's 76 birthday.
The menu?
Right here:
          granola and Greek yogurt
          roasted tomato and goat cheese quiche
          mesclun salad with balsamic dressing
          ham and cheese egg bake
          crème brulee French toast
          sausage and peppers
          bagels with cream cheese, lox, tomatoes and capers
          fruit tray with dip
          coffee, fresh squeezed orange juice and champagne

Yes, it was yummy!
And in case you didn't know, I LOVE to cook. :)

That's all from me. School is almost out and I have to find a new writing schedule.

Have a great week!

Monday, June 1, 2015

Some Good Advice (I should finally take)

Happy Monday!

June 1st. Ugg. The year is practically over and I'm behind in my writing goals.
I hate when that happens.

Anyhew, still working on edits for Wedding Date for Hire, but I hope to hand them in this week. Already planning to write a third in this series then write in a totally different genre.


Well, I received some writing advice a while ago from my publisher and I'm just NOW starting to take it.
And it was this:

1) the thinking before was brand yourself. That's all well and good, but maybe not in today's market anymore.
 You have the opportunity to find new readers if you write for a different imprint or genre. If they 'discover' you there and you put a teaser in your book with your other writing, they just might like you enough to try your other books.

2) self-publish. Yes, my publisher actually told me to try self-publishing. Why? Same reasoning as above. There are definite readers out there who may only read Indie authors. Because of that, you're missing out on a market share who does not know you and may never know you unless you put yourself in that arena. Their thinking is by doing so, it will help your other books sell.

That's their thinking anyway, but it makes sense to me.

On another note, my daughter was recently inducted into the Junior National Honor Society and her new favorite series is the Selection Series by Kiera Cass. She wants to lend me her books to read so that's what I'll be taking to the beach this summer. :)

And that's all from me.

Have a good week!


Tuesday, May 19, 2015

Teaser Tuesday!

Hi, all.

Since it's Tuesday and I was tagged by fellow Romance is Bliss author Paula Altenburg to play the 777 game, I figured I'd give it a go.

It's basically 7 lines from p. 7 of my WIP and then tag 7 others.

Don't worry! I'm not tagging anyone, but if you want to play, tell me in your comment because I do enjoy reading them!

Of course I have nothing exciting happening on page 7, but what the heck.

Here are 7 lines from page 7 of WEDDING DATE FOR HIRE--which is still only on its first pass edits.

            Unbelievably handsome? That remark might have been pushing it. But apparently handsome wasn't all he was, because like her own personal Amtrak line, the words kept coming out of her mouth full steam ahead. "He adores me too." 

            Brain, derail my mouth right now.

            "And he's rich," she added. 

            I mean it, Brain! Knock it off.

            Her sister threw her arms around her, which Maddie said a prayer of thanks for because it managed to shut her big trap up from saying anything further about her adoring, rich, unbelievably handsome—and more importantly fake—boyfriend.
Ha! And that's it for me.
And thanks for reading. :)

Monday, May 18, 2015

In The Editing Cave

Hi, all!

Happy Monday! Sorry if I was MIA last week. Between library drama, editing, and dealing with contractors, life has been a bit hectic.

The good news is I hope to have my edits done this week, there is no more library drama, and everything seems to be moving pretty well on the contractor/insurance front.


In other good news, I found out that Fiancé by Fate is a 2015 Readers' Crown Finalist by RomCon.


I don't know what the weather is where you are, but my daughter asked me to run the air conditioner today. Seriously? We live in NJ. But Sunday really was a nice little teaser of summer.

And speaking of summer, I HAVE to share a recipe I have made twice so far in the last few weeks.

What's great is once you get those fresh summer tomatoes and basil it will make your toes curl from freshness and tastiness. :)

I got this from Ina at the Food Network. (She's my fav right now)

Tomato Crostini with Whipped Feta
  • 6 ounces good feta, crumbled
  • 2 ounces cream cheese, at room temperature
  • 2/3 cup good olive oil, divided
  • 2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 tablespoons minced shallots (2 shallots)
  • 2 teaspoons minced garlic (2 cloves)
  • 2 tablespoons good red wine vinegar
  • 2 pounds ripe heirloom or cherry tomatoes, 1/2-inch-diced
  • 3 tablespoons julienned fresh basil leaves, plus extra for serving
  • 20 to 25 (1/2-inch-thick) diagonal baguette slices, toasted -I did NOT toast mine so they were less messy crumbly to eat
  • 2 tablespoons toasted pine nuts
For the whipped feta, place the feta and cream cheese in the bowl of a food processor fitted with the steel blade. Pulse until the cheeses are mixed. Add 1/3 cup of the olive oil, the lemon juice, 1/2 teaspoon salt, and 1/4 teaspoon pepper and process until smooth.
For the tomatoes, up to an hour before you're serving, combine the shallots, garlic, and vinegar in a medium bowl. Set aside for 5 minutes. Whisk in the remaining 1/3 cup olive oil, 1 teaspoon salt, and 1/2 teaspoon pepper. Add the tomatoes, stir gently, and set aside for 10 minutes. Stir in the basil and taste for seasonings.
To assemble the crostini, spread each slice of bread with a generous amount of whipped feta. With a slotted spoon, place the tomatoes on top. Put the crostini on plates and scatter with the pine nuts. Sprinkle with extra basil and serve.