Please join me in welcoming guest blogger, Peggy Jaeger to The Roses of Prose.
I was thumbing through a few of my older manuscripts today and found something most of them had in common – despite my never realizing it before: they all take place in Autumn.
I didn’t take me long to discover why I’d unconsciously set them in that time of year.
I live in New Hampshire, one of the prettiest states in the contiguous 48. Especially in – you got it! – Autumn. The changing colors of September through November are amazing to watch. We have a tourist cottage industry here in New England called Leaf Peeping season and the tourists themselves are referred to as Leaf Peepers.
If you’ve ever taken a car tour up around these parts in the Fall, you know why it’s such a popular time of year.
If you haven’t, well, what are you waiting for??
My very first New England autumn was memorable for so many things, but most of all my introduction to the natural beauty of this region. I watched the leaves on the trees turn form vibrant verdant to crisp apple red and then on to golden yellow and burnt umber/orange. I could have filled a Crayola 64 pack with all the different shades and hues I saw blossoming and changing everyday in my backyard.
I live in the woods, so I have a front row seat for all this splendor every day. And I am so thankful for it.
The trees lining my property form an enclosure of beauty all year round. But in the Fall, that beauty changes to a patchwork and chaos of stimulating colors that just tickle the ol’ eyes and heart.
Since I love autumn so much, it stands to reason that I have my characters fall in love during that season. And since I set so many of my stories in New England, with so much natural beauty surrounding them, the characters are influenced by that beauty, helping them fall into love.
Kind of a cute euphemism, no? Falling into love in the fall?
(I know, but I can’t help being this way, so deal!)
Anyway…the setting of any story actually becomes a character in many ways, especially if the setting is integral to the story line. My third book in the MacQuire Women Series, First Impressions, takes place in the Fall and there are many references to the season that help make up the core of the book , a baseball game at Fenway Park and apple picking in a local orchard just two serious plot points. They wouldn’t have been as effective if they hadn’t taken place in the season they did.
For the writers out there, what season is your favorite to write about? Or are you an equal opportunity season author? If you have a favorite, why is it your fave? Winter is a huge season to write about , brought home by all the romance books written with Christmas love stories. June and Summer bride stories are popular as well. Really, any season could be made to promote love. Which is your favorite?
So, what season do you like to read and/or write about? Drop me a line and share your thoughts.
Symphony pianist Moira Cleary comes home after four years of touring, exhausted, sick, and spiritually broken. Emotional and psychological abuse at the hands of someone she trusted has left her gaunt, anxious, and at a crossroads both professionally and personally.
Moira’s best friend, veterinarian Quentin Stapleton, wants nothing more than to help Moira get well. Can his natural healing skills make it possible for her to open her heart again? And can he convince her she’s meant to stay home now with the family that loves her - and with him - forever?
“Remember when your cousin Tiffany got married in the backyard here?”
Confused, Moira nodded.
Quentin rubbed her bottom lip with the pad of his thumb. “When the Reverend told Cole ‘you can kiss your bride,’ and he swooped her off the ground, spun her around and kissed her silly? Remember what you said?”
“I think I said it was the most romantic thing I’d ever seen.”
He nodded. “The exact quote was, ‘I hope someone kisses me like that some day.’”
Her grin was quick at the memory. “Pat snorted and said I’d better be satisfied with licks from the horses and Rob Roy because no guy was ever gonna kiss me.”
“He wasn’t known for tact back then.” He rubbed a hand down her back as he held her. “Remember what happened later on behind the barn?”
Because she did, she couldn’t stop the heat from spreading up her face like wildfire. When she nodded again, he said, “You wanted to know what it felt like to be kissed like that and since I was your best friend, you thought I should be the one to do it, because you – quote - felt safe with me – unquote.”
“What was I? Eleven?”
“Thirteen. And I was more than willing. Almost broke my heart in two when you said afterward, ‘I don’t see what all the fuss is about.’”
“Hush.” He kissed her forehead. “Ever since that day, all I’ve wanted is a second chance. Now,” he pulled her body closer, wrapped both arms around her small waist, his hands resting just above the dent in her spine. “We’re both a little older, a little more mature. Some of us are much more experienced—”
“Experienced,” he said, the laugh in his voice quiet and seductive, “and things can be so much better.”
Peggy Jaeger’s love of writing began in the third grade when she won her first writing contest with a short story titled THE CLOWN. After that, there was no stopping her. Throughout college and after she became a Registered Nurse, she had several Nursing Journal articles published, in addition to many mystery short stories in Literary Magazines. When her daughter was born, Peggy had an article titled THE VOICES OF ANGELS published and reprinted in several parenting magazines, detailing the birth and the accident that almost turned this wonderful event into a tragedy. She had two children’s books published in 1995 titled THE KINDNESS TALES and EMILY AND THE EASTER EGGS, which were illustrated by her artist mother-in-law. While her daughter grew, Peggy would write age appropriate stories for her to read along with, and finally, to read on her own. Her YA stories are mysteries involving smart and funny 12-13 year old girls and an unusual collection of friends and relatives. They all take place in the 1980’s.
She has a Master’s Degree in Nursing Administration and had several articles published on Alzheimer’s Disease when she ran an Alzheimer’s In Patient care unit during the 1990’s
In 2005 she was thrilled to have an article on motherhood placed in the CHICKEN SOUP FOR EVERY MOTHER’S SOUL edition. She has won several awards in various Writer’s Digest short story and personal article categories over the years. Recently, she has placed first in the Dixie Kane 2013 Memorial Contest in the Short/Long Contemporary romance Category, and in the Single Title Contemporary Category, and third place in the ICO Romance Contest for 2013, and in 2014 she was a finalist in the Put Your heart in a Book contest.
A life-long and avid romance reader and writer, she is a member of RWA and her local New Hampshire RWA Chapter.
Peggy has embraced the techno age and writes for three blogs, all detailing events in her life. One titled, 50 pounds for 50 years is a personal blog about weight loss, one about her life as an EMPTY NESTER and her most recent one MOMENTS FROM MENOPAUSE, a humorous and informative guide through this time in a woman’s life.
She also has her own website http://peggyjaeger.com where she writes about everyday life and how it relates to writing. Twitter is her current obsession, but she is never far from her Facebook pages.
In 2015 she will have her first three contemporary romance novels published by The Wild Rose Press: Skater’s Waltz, book 1 in the MaQuire Women Series, and There’s No Place Like Home, book 2. Book 3 is titled First Impression. Three more are in the works for this series, in addition to her Cooking with Kandy series.
Social Media Links:
Amazon Author Page: http://www.amazon.com/-/e/B00T8E5LN0
Buy Links for THERE’S NO PLACE LIKE HOME
The Wild Rose Press: http://bit.ly/1GmM1Je
Barnes and Noble Nook : http://bit.ly/1JjMUG7