March Madness means basketball at our house. Hours of basketball. Especially if a Michigan team is playing. But only for Hubs. I am not a sports fan unless it’s baseball. To me, March means Opening Day is around the corner. So while he is glued to the TV watching really tall guys run back and forth on the court, I’ll be on my laptop with Enya blasting through my earbuds writing the next chapter of my latest book.
Besides signaling the coming of Major League Baseball, March is such an iffy month here in the upper Midwest. Is it the end of winter or the beginning of spring? Sometimes Mother Nature can’t make up her mind. Snowstorms and crocuses sticking their tiny heads out of the snow. That first bit of green poking through the dead brown grass along the highway. Daffodils? Well, maybe not yet.
In March, I start planning my garden. What new flowers will I plant this year and where? Will I go with tried-and-true petunias in the flower boxes and impatiens on the shady northside of the house and marigolds on the south? Or will I be adventurous and try something new? Then I count down the days until our local nursery has annuals for sale. I don’t dare buy them too early as our area of Michigan often has late frosts. Who wants to do all that work preparing the beds and planting flowers only to lose them to the cold?
Since March this year opened with snowstorms throughout the country, this month should go out with gentle warm breezes and lots of sunshine. I can only hope.
Blurb for The Pilot:
Life on the frontier of space is hard enough so when pirates stole Celara d'Enfaden's cargo, she vowed not to be tricked again. Determined to make an example out of indie pilots who disobey orders, Coalition Administrator Trevarr Jovano impounds Celara’s starship and cargo. If he backs down, he’ll lose respect. If she can’t deliver her cargo, she’ll default on her loan and lose her only home—her ship. More important than her ship, though, is her brother. To rescue him from a galactic gangster, she’ll even work with Jovano who is bent on avenging his wife’s murder.
Excerpt from The Pilot
Celara stopped looking for the Dockmaster when she saw a pair of legs topped by the most gorgeous set of male buns she’d seen in at least a year. The owner of the aforementioned body parts, encased in the dark blue uniform of the repair crew, was bent over the open hatch of an Agilean Speeder.
Now, there was a ship. The sleek vessel—one of the fastest in the galaxy—almost distracted her from the mechanic. He’d shrugged off the top portion of the jumpsuit so that it pooled around his waist. The environment of the repair shop affected many newcomers, especially those unaccustomed to the heat.
As she stared at his butt, all she could think was oh, mama. She hoped he was human and that the rest of him lived up to the preview. Better yet, she hoped he was in a party mood. After escaping from the pirates, Celara wanted to howl . . . and someone to howl with.
“Hey, big boy,” she called to the mechanic. “Wanna party?”
As the mechanic abruptly straightened, he whacked his head on the raised engine hatch. He muttered a Bricaldian curse about origins. She hoped he meant the ship’s, not hers. But then, considering her origins, that curse wasn’t out of line. When he turned around, she sucked in a breath. Oh, yeah. A primal part of her sat up and took notice. His backside, gorgeous as it was, didn’t compare to the rest of him. He had the broad shoulders and muscles of a laborer plus the black hair, square jaw and blade-straight nose of Bricaldian aristocracy. What a delicious combination.
“Did you arrive on that hauler?” He nodded to her ship. His voice, a tantalizing allure of baritone and chokiris, sounded vaguely familiar.
“Yep. That’s my ship.” She tucked her thumbs into the side pockets of her trousers and thrust out her chest a little in pride. “D’Enfaden’s Thermopylae. Fastest little transport in three sectors.”
He walked past her to examine her ship then ran his hand—long, strong fingers, she noted—over the dents and scrapes along the aft section. “It appears to have sustained damage.”
“My thruster gimbal got damaged when I kissed an asteroid evading filthy pirates. They didn’t catch me, though.” She grinned. “Hey, you new around here? Don’t remember seeing you before—and I sure would remember seeing you.”
He arched his dark eyebrow.
She raised her hand, palm outward, in the traditional indie greeting. “Celara d’Enfaden.” As he stared at her with green eyes as sharp and clear as veridion, she raised her own eyebrow. “And you are . . .”
When he reached into the pocket of his work uniform and pulled out a zircan leather folder, she groaned before he even opened it. She knew what the folder contained. A shiny gold badge, carved with an intricate array of stars, swirls and a tiny red jewel in the center. The insignia of the Coalition.
“I am Administrator Trevarr Jovano.” He snapped his fingers and two armed Security personnel stepped out of the shadows of the Agilean Speeder. “I am impounding your ship and confiscating your cargo.”
The Pilot is available at: Amazon ~ Barnes & Noble ~ Smashwords ~ Kobo
What flowers are your favorites?
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Diane Burton combines her love of mystery, adventure, science fiction and romance into writing romantic fiction. She’s a member of Romance Writers of America® as well as the Mid-Michigan and Fantasy, Futuristic & Paranormal RWA chapters. She is the author of the Switched series, about twins exchanging places—from Earth to a starship and the reverse. With The Pilot, she begins a new series about strong women on the frontier of space. She is also a contributor to the anthology How I Met My Husband. Diane and her husband live in Michigan. They have two children and two grandchildren.
Great to have you with us today, Diane. Wow! Though I am somewhat familiar with The Pilot, I hadn't read THAT excerpt before. Another one for my TBR list for sure.
Thanks, Margo. It's my pleasure to be here today. I appreciate the opportunity. Best wishes to all the Roses.
Good to see you here, Diane. I feel your March weather pain. In Tahoe, our yard is still covered in snow, though not as much as usual this year. Bare patches are showing. As for flowers, I have a brown thumb. I enjoy looking at other people's yards! Best of luck with your books!
Thanks, Jannine. The brown grass is so depressing.
Blooms were opening on our magnolias when we got 3 inches of snow here in southern VA. Our snow had melted in two days, but my blooms are very tender right now. Some have brown petals instead of white. My favorite flower is lilac. Unfortuately my lilac bush has not done well these past two years.
All that aside, I'm thrilled to see you here today. Much luck to you in your writing.
Thanks, Vonnie. So sad about your magnolias. I love lilacs, too. We planted 2 bushes cut from a huge lilac bush at the house where I grew up. It took 10 years for them to bloom. I hope the snow here won't damage the flowers.
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