Today’s guest at Books, Chocolate and Wine is Nicole S. Patrick. Nicole and I are New Jersey Romance Writer’s members. She’s one of the most organized people I know. Nicole chaired the 2013 NJRW Conference. She ran a well-oiled machine and had a successful conference. Nicole is one of the Timeless Scribes.
Ready, Set… Organize???
January isn’t my favorite month for a few reasons. One: it’s usually cold, and I am not a fan of temperatures under 70 degrees. And two: I inevitably look back on the past year and think…I can do better this year. I can get more…organized? Manage my time better. Clean out those clothes that haven’t seen the light of day in a long, long, time. Just thinking about it makes me twitchy.
With two active boys, a husband, a writing career in the making, and a home to take care of—getting and staying on track is essential. Time to begin 2016 with a personal assistant/planner? What?! Or maybe just a plan? Sure. No problem. Let’s give it a go.
This month I decided to take a time management class offered online through one of the RWA chapters. So far I’ve cleaned out (somewhat) my inbox, organized some email folders, and now I’m going to tackle the internet bookmarks. De-clutter to de-stress. Sounds easy enough.
I’ve found out a few things about myself over the years, and also through working with other authors, and namely my business partners in Timeless Scribes Publishing (Ruth, Emma Kaye, and Lita Harris). I’m the type of person who can talk to anyone. So the “sales” end of the business is something I like. I also excel when I have a deadline, when I can see the tasks set before me, like a giant To Do list. Things like accounting tasks, numbers, and financial organization…not so much. Technical savvy is way on the bottom of the list. But because I recognize my strengths, it’s helped me manage my time and the efforts of the group. We all have a role in our company, one we excel at and that’s what makes it work…and helps us stay friends too.
Every person has the ability to recognize their strong points, but actually putting them to practice, whether in a business situation, your family, with friends, can be a great help to succeed.
Is there a magic potion or formula for managing time, organization, or getting your closet color coordinated? Nope. But figuring out where to start is a start.
Timeless Moments, The Final Chapter ~ White Christmas
A chance encounter can change everything.
Prosecutor Savannah Moore's life changed in an instant. Career on hiatus, recovering from an attack, she finds solace for the holidays in the town of Havenport, Rhode Island. A change of pace for sure. Just what she needs to heal and rebuild her confidence to testify against her attacker. An unexpected meeting of gorgeous Marc "Mac" MacDonald leaves Savannah unsure of her next move. Should she stay in Havenport with this brave, sexy, and hard, yet gentle former Marine? Or, should she return to the crazy life of courtrooms and cases? Mac helps her understand that taking one day at a time might lead to a future she least expected.
Mac MacDonald has finally found a place to call home. A place where he feels part of a family. His car repair business is booming, his former girlfriend and all her drama is history, and he's ready to move on to the next chapter in his life. Savannah Moore is cute, sexy, and tougher than she looks. But when someone tries to hurt her, Mac realizes he's never had this intense degree of protective instincts for anyone, not even in combat. Savannah has touched a place in his heart that surprises and thrills him. Can he convince her to let this thing between them grow?
The forest green of his shirt turned almost black from the spreading stain.
“Your dog peed on me.” His lips clamped into a thin line and he pushed a lock of his long, dark hair away from his forehead.
Yep—definitely cover model material. Bet he’d be great dressed as a pirate, or a duke maybe.
Later she’d probably think back on this moment and kick herself for the lack of an appropriate comeback—something snappy, or snarky, or even polite. But at seven fifteen a.m., all she could think to do was giggle and bite her lip to keep from laughing.
“You find this amusing?” He tilted his head and his dark eyebrows winged into a vee.
He was sunburned, which was unusual for December. Maybe he worked outdoors, or maybe it was windburn. And that’s when she noticed a white line on the left side from temple to cheek—the long pucker of a scar. Staring was rude—so Gran always said—but she couldn’t tamp down her natural curiosity, especially when it had to do with scars.
“Um…no…of course I don’t.” She shook her head—quite vigorously. Maybe it would knock some sense into her and squash the giggles bubbling.
He didn’t seem to believe her if his glare was any indication. Whatever had caused the injury didn’t detract from his amazing eyes—hazel with flecks the color of caramel.
At the thought of caramel, her stomach growled, reminding her she hadn’t eaten breakfast. The image of a double latte with extra whipped cream and a scone from Led Zeppoli bakery popped in her head.
The man moved around the front bumper and Brutus, sensing oncoming conflict, growled.
“Call off your junior attack dog, or I’ll pee on him,” he said between gritted teeth.
She blinked. “That’s illegal.”
One eyebrow arched.
“Peeing in public,” she added quickly. “You’ll get a summons at the very least. Well, the first offense is $250, then it’s more.” She clamped her mouth shut at his scowl. Why not just site case precedents to him while you’re at it? Old habits died hard.
Brutus—thank his cranky little soul—decided to stand in front of her and bare his doggy teeth.
The man shrugged. “Back off, you little devil. I’m not going to do anything but send your owner here my dry cleaning bill.”
“Oh I’m not his owner,” she stated, pointing to the logo on her shirt, which covered her left boob. Good going, pointing out the boobage. “Funny, I think he’s a demon most days too.” She smiled and patted Brutus’ head.
Savannah blew out a breath. Okay, so much for trying to defuse the situation with small talk. “I’m really sorry about your shirt.” She stifled a dreaded chuckle. She couldn’t seem to control them. What in the world was wrong with her this morning? “I’ll pay for it.”
Clearly the man did not appreciate her mirth. Jeez, it wasn’t as if Brutus had done number two on his boots. Plus, with the grease on his jeans, he obviously didn’t have a problem getting dirty. His phone rang, thankfully breaking their awkward moment. He reached into his pocket, and frowned at the screen.
“Oh, you’ll pay for it,” he warned before he answered the call, and she thought there was a slight tilt to the corner of his mouth, but it was gone in a second. He turned away and engaged in his conversation, leaving her to stare at his back.
Nicole S. Patrick's Bio
Once upon a time I “borrowed” my mother’s romance novels in my early teen years, and from that moment I was thoroughly hooked and lost in the world of romance. Real life got in the way—college, a career, husband, kids…but the love of those dashing knights, gallant and honorable military officers, and sexy detectives who were strong, yet vulnerable underneath held true.
With so many characters floating around in my head for more years than I will admit, I decided it was time to put those characters onto the page. When I stopped working in Corporate America to raise my children and moved to the suburbs, the words started to flow. Currently I write military romantic suspense and short story contemporary romance. And with my business partners formed Timeless Scribes Publishing, LLC.
I salute all the men and women in uniform for their service and sacrifices and I thank them for the inspiration for my stories.
Currently residing in New Jersey – with my own hero - my husband, and two wonderful and over-active sons I continue to pursue this crazy dream of being an author.