“Having My Baby” Swag Bag — Draw is happening at 10:00 EST!

It’s not too late to get your name (and email) in the running… I’m writing names and making the draw in approximately 30 minutes!

Click the link: http://mystiparker.blogspot.ca/2013/03/march-giveaway-madness-17-having-my.html#comment-form

Leave your name and email as a comment, and you could be looking forward to getting this terrific prize pack in the mail!

March Madness Giveaway for the anthology, Having My Baby -- you could win!

March Madness Giveaway for the anthology, Having My Baby — you could win!

Let’s take inventory, one more time:

-Signed print copy of Having My Baby, the anthology, including my short story, “Tabitha’s Solution”

-Key ring with pics of the cover from Having My Baby plus my other currently published works!

Having My Baby collectible pen!

-Canvas printed tote bag featuring my blog, Romance and Other Dangers!

-Handmade beeswax tea lights, with paper core wicks (lead-free)!

-Bonus Book: Signed print copy of Midnight Thirsts with my novella, “Mist and Midnight” (prequel for The Talbot Trilogy which debuts this spring)

What can you do to be fit and healthy? Try the SlimKicker Challenge & Giveaway!

Fitness/Health Challenge Time! Leave a comment on my blog for a great idea, like “doing 20 pushups a day for 1 week”, or “squatting during commercials”. Your suggestion could be chosen by SlimKicker as the best idea posted here, and used on their site to promote health and fitness — and if it is, you’ll win* a free Hamilton-Beach Power Multi-Function Blender, courtesy of SlimKicker!


The contest is open for one week, starting Sunday, March 31 and closing on Saturday, April 6.

*Please note, the giveaway is limited to USA residents only.

Background: Why am I offering this contest?

In January 2012, I ordered myself some clothing in my normal, post-childbearing size and was shocked when it arrived and didn’t fit! I weighed nearly as much as I had while I was pregnant with my children, and this was disturbing.

Instead of sending the clothes back, I joined Weight Watchers, and over the course of four or five months, dropped 22 lbs. In the summer, I attempted to get back into yoga and tried running a few times, but I couldn’t keep the routine up. Then, this past Christmas, my husband bought me a 3-month gym membership, and it was great! I went frequently, felt empowered and strong, sweated almost every day for a week or two at a time. Terrific.

And then the gym closed.

And the winter was long.

Doughnuts are again my comfort food.

But no more!

I’ve found SlimKicker. It’s a lot of like Weight Watchers, but I like it better because it’s like a game. When I record my food and activity, I get points toward a reward I give myself. Achieving a challenge means levelling up. It’s really positive and empowering, and I’m feeling enthusiastic again about portioning and getting active. SlimKicker also has lots of coupon codes such as Bowflex promo codes.

So get in on this, folks! Let’s do some brainstorming on little ways that will make a big impact on being fit and healthy! I can’t wait to see who’ll be expecting a blender on their doorstep next month!


A Ranger’s Tale — NEW COVER Reveal!

I’m so excited for my friend Mysti Parker — if you’re a fan of fantasy, romance, and elves, you’re going to love this! I read A Ranger’s Tale last summer, devouring it in a whole afternoon. I could not put it down. And now, with a new cover debut at the end of the month, I’m getting pumped to read it all over again. The mystery is driving me crazy, folks!

What will be on the new cover for A Ranger's Tale?The glimpses are tantalizing!

What will be on the new cover for A Ranger’s Tale?The glimpses are tantalizing!

Here’s author, blogger, and mother extraordinaire, Mysti Parker to tell you more:

The world of Tallenmere was born in January, 2011 with this first exciting story about Caliphany, an elven noblewoman who longs to leave her gilded cage, and Galadin, the half-elf former pirate who trains her to do just that. To better reflect its place in the burgeoning series and Caliphany’s choice between two good men, cover artist Caroline Andrus and I tore down the original cover to make room for a whole new look! 

Join us for this exciting reveal party on Facebook, Friday, March 29 from 5-10 PM EST. Bring a friend, too. There do be prizes, mateys! 

*$25 Amazon.com gift card

*Signed Print copy of A Ranger’s Tale

*And MORE!

CLICK HERE TO JOIN THE PARTY: https://www.facebook.com/events/103766896485420/

In the world of Tallenmere, an elven noblewoman longed to leave her gilded cage. A half-breed former pirate wanted nothing more than to escape his guilty past. Easier said than done…

High elf Caliphany Aranea leads an enviable life as King Leopold’s niece and daughter of Sirius, Leogard’s most famous wizard. Yet, being forced to follow in her father’s footsteps and being betrothed to a man she doesn’t even like makes her want a taste of life outside the city walls. 

As a young boy, half-elf Galadin Trudeaux witnessed his parents’ death at the hands of pirates. After being raised by those same murderers and forced to do their bidding, he escaped and now lives an honest life as a sea merchant and ranger. 

When two brutes at Leogard Harbor attempt to kidnap Caliphany while she dreams of faraway lands, Galadin comes to her rescue. Impressed by his skills, she asks him to train her as a ranger. Though he is hesitant at first to train a woman of her class, Caliphany’s hefty sack of gold finally persuades him. Unfortunately, her father is not amused, and the two must escape before Caliphany faces a forced marriage and Galadin faces a noose.

From that moment on, she and Galadin embark on an adventure of a lifetime. Only if they can survive the trials ahead, will they find a love that stands the test of time.


You will be able to find the brand new version of A Ranger’s Tale with its shiny new cover at all major online bookstores, including:
All Romance eBooks
Coffeetime Romance

About the Author
Mysti Parker (pseudonym) is a full time wife, mother of three, and a writer. Her first novel, A Ranger’s Tale, was published in January, 2011 by Melange Books, and the second in the fantasy romance series, Serenya’s Song, was published in April 2012. Book Three, Hearts in Exile, is expected to be born in the summer of 2013. Mysti reviews books for SQ Magazine, an online specfic publication, and is the proud owner of Unwritten, a blog recently voted #3 for eCollegeFinder’s Top Writing Blogs award. She resides in Buckner, KY with her husband and three children.

Author Mysti Parker

Author Mysti Parker

Mysti’s other writings have appeared in the anthologies Hearts of Tomorrow, Christmas Lites, and Christmas Lites II. Her flash fiction has appeared on the online magazine EveryDayFiction. She is currently a book reviewer for the online speculative fiction magazine SQ Mag and has served as a class mentor in Writers Village University’s six week free course, F2K.

The Tallenmere Series:
A Ranger’s Tale
Serenya’s Song
Hearts in Exile (coming summer 2013)

Twitter: @MystiParker
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/pages/Mysti-Parker/103786449704221

I hope you’re as intrigued as I am! Mark your calendar to attend this event and discover the new cover for A Ranger’s Tale on March 29!


It’s Here! It’s Happening! The March Madness Giveaway!

Visit for a Giveaway!

Visit for a Giveaway!

http://mystiparker.blogspot.ca — Click the link, and leave a comment! I’d love to hear your true baby stories!

One more time, here’s the Swag Bag up for grabs:

March Madness Giveaway for the anthology, Having My Baby -- you could win!

March Madness Giveaway for the anthology, Having My Baby — you could win!

I’ll be popping in and out all day long, as time allows… See you on Unwritten!

April Excitement! A-Z Challenge and Guest Author Mark Knight

LogoColorNoTextExciting things are happening this April! On April 9, I’m going to do another guest post on Unwritten (http://mystiparker.blogspot.ca) AND on the 13th, I’m going to host an author here, on Romance and Other Dangers!

April 9 — I’m participating in the A-Z Challenge, posting about the letter “H”. Will I ruminate about Hobbies? Or talk about being Happy, Healthy, and Home? Should my post focus on the H-Bomb? Or how about Hearts… Haberdasheries… Habits (I have some baaaad ones, shhh)… the Habs (probably not, I don’t really like hockey — why, another “H”!)… Hackers? Hackneys? Haddock? Hadrian’s Wall the Hadron Collider Hags HagarShipleyHairHailHaidaHalfwitsHalosHamilton (Ontario or Bermuda?)… Wait and see! What topic do you want to see me tackle?

Visit for a Giveaway!

Visit for a Giveaway!

April 13 — I’m welcoming Mark Knight, author of Blood Family: Quest for the Vampire Key (release date 4/7/13), as part of a Blog Tour! If you like dark paranormal reads, you’ll definitely want to check this out:

Until the age of seventeen, Daniel Dark had no idea of his true origins. Something was ulcerating deep inside him, waiting to claw its way free. Pastor Nathan Dark and his wife, Annie, had adopted him and brought him up as their own. But Daniel always felt that there was a secret they feared tell him…
Everything changes the day a mysterious package arrives at his home. It contains blood – human blood. Daniel’s vampire half awakens and takes its first step out of the shadows. The once lazy, goalless youth transforms into sharp-sensed killer. Now, there is no turning back.
Many horrors await Daniel, for he not only can detect but also attract the living dead…
Daniel Dark will unlock the sinister netherworld where helpless humans are kept and bred for bloodletting, and where he will have to face the unutterable evil.

Blood Family

Find out more on April 13!

March Madness Giveaway TOMORROW!

Nothing like a contest to make a Monday better! Chase those start-of-the-week blues away tomorrow by visiting me at Unwritten — http://mystiparker.blogspot.ca — where Mysti Parker is hosting and I’m giving away a Swag Bag of goodies to celebrate my most recent publishing!

March Madness Giveaway for the anthology, Having My Baby -- you could win!

March Madness Giveaway for the anthology, Having My Baby — you could win!

Snow falling on Ostara

The equinox is a powerful day, whether it’s observed through the lens of spirituality or as a layperson. The arrival of spring, even if it’s only in the calendar sense, is welcomed by most, especially after a long and challenging winter.

In my part of the world, we still have a lot of snow. (I think I’ve been talking about that a great deal lately…we’re in the middle of the fifth month of blank landscape and cold weather.) And I know that further to the south, recent storms have dumped more white stuff than people expected or wanted. Not an auspicious start to the season of warmth and growth.

But this morning I heard the birds calling through the flurries. And the roads were clearing again, bit by bit. The air is softer on exposed skin, and the winds are less chilling. Winter may be fighting back, but it is losing once again.

I wanted to celebrate Ostara with a clean house, planting seeds in preparation for gardening, meditating, and painting eggs. I will admit a twinge of envy for those who are able to hold ritual festivities outdoors, lighting fires and scenting the freshness of rich earth. But I’ve been reading The Secret Garden with my daughter, and because it’s been years, I’d forgotten how much that book is about the spring — its descriptions of the thawing of the earth and reviving of life are vivid, beautiful, and inspiring. Sharing this story, little by little, in the weeks before and after Ostara is a ritual in itself. I can picture reading this story with my daughter every spring, in honour of new beginnings and fresh starts.

However you look at the first day of spring, wherever you are, I hope that you are feeling the change of the season with all of your being.

The Swag Has Arrived for the March 25th Giveaway!

Just about FIVE days to go to my guest post with Unwritten’s March Madness Giveaway on Monday, March 25! Have you visited http://mystiparker.blogspot.ca yet?

March Madness Giveaway for the anthology, Having My Baby -- you could win!

March Madness Giveaway for the anthology, Having My Baby — you could win!

In celebration of Spring, I’m offering a Romance and Other Dangers tote bag filled with a signed print copy of Having My Baby, which includes my short story “Tabitha’s Solution”, a Having My Baby keychain, a Having My Baby pen, two hand-rolled beeswax tea lights made by yours truly, AND a bonus book: Midnight Thirsts, which includes my novella “Mist and Midnight”, the prequel to my debut novel coming this April — Wind and Shadow: Book One of the Talbot Trilogy

I’m so excited for this event, and I hope you can join me!

Wishing for a do-over… A sonnet for a loss.

It’s bothered me for years. I know that it’s better to live without regrets, that it’s useless to worry about things we cannot change. When I graduated from high school, I was given a wonderful, and surprising gift: a surplus French horn from the music department of my high school. It was not in the best condition, but it played, and I was incredibly honoured and pleased to have it. However, over time, I stopped playing for a variety of reasons. And there came a point while I was in university when, while waiting for student loans to replenish my bank account, between the end of a summer job and the start of the fall work season, I made a decision that I wish I could go back and do differently. 

* * *

Sonnet for a Lost French Horn

Valued once for its brassy gleam and sound,
Beauty was not enough in poverty.
Though dusty, tarnished, dented coils still wound,
Sold on the street for a sum of money.
Immediate hit of regret, loss, despair;
A precious gift turned into cash for food.
The potential, the talent, gone somewhere
Has it helped another? I prayed it would.
Beloved tool, my heart’s mellow voice,
Practice daunted by time and bashful fear;
Lacking spine, still, my neglect was a choice.
It lay silent, slept, for over a year.
Entrusted to a new soul, my token.
Somewhere it sings, no longer broken.

* * *

I remember how wonderful it felt to be part of an ensemble, making music together. I remember the pain of swollen and chapped lips, aching wrists and dented skin on my thigh from resting the edge of the bell. Emptied the spit and oiled the valves. I loved its tone, how it could ring and wail, bellow and whisper. One day, I would like to have another for my own pleasure, to play when the house is empty and the time is mine.

Until then, I have the memories. And the man who bought my horn was an older gentleman. I have hope that he took care of it, restored it to a really good condition, and made it sing again.