Abigail Sharpe – Love & Dancing

Hi friends!

Welcome to the 5th Annual Read-A-Romance Month!

While I read romance all year long, August is the month we celebrate this awesome genre! Come back every day to read all three “Power of Romance” posts. Check out the full calendar of authors here. You can also find links to the last four years’ posts from the boxes in the sidebar, and if you’d like, you can follow RARM on Facebook.

Happy August!

#LoveRomance #ThePowerOfRomance

The Love That Makes You Want To Dance

My kids are in band, and one year, they played for a Veteran’s Day ceremony.  I couldn’t stay for the whole thing, since I had to get back to work, but I did get to see their performance.

One of the songs they played was Tuxedo Junction – a popular song from the 1940s.  The conductor invited anyone who wanted to get up and dance.  And out of the couple of hundred people at the event, one couple did.

They jitterbugged and swung and hopped their way through the music and when it was over, they got as much applause as the band.  And this couple?  Had to be in their 80s, if not older.  If you’ve been with your partner for a lifetime and you still want to get up and dance, that’s romance.

Okay, yes, it’s possible it was a second or even third marriage for them.  But in my mind, they love each other as much now as they did when they first danced that dance 70 years ago.

One weekend recently, I was putzing around a Barnes and Noble café.  I’d like to say I was involved with writing my next novel, but in reality, I was digging Words With Friends and 2048.  Eventually I looked up and took stock of the room.

At almost every table sat older couples drinking coffee and reading. Maybe they said a quick word to each other.  Maybe they laughed over a shared read.  Maybe they sat in silence, each enjoying their drink.  But they did it together.  And that’s romance, too.

It’s not the grand gestures or expensive vacations or dazzling gifts.  It’s the pure and simple love that makes you want to dance.  It’s hanging out with a book and a drink.  And it’s wanting to still be together, even after a lifetime.

Abigail recommends:

Charlee Allden  –   www.charleeallden.com   –  @Amazon

The first in her Arena Dogs series, Finding Mercury, is hot and sexy and makes you want one (or two!) of these alpha men to call your own.

Kat Latham  –   katlatham.com  –  @Amazon

I know when I pick up a Kat Latham book that I’m going to get a satisfying read with heat and heart and hot men!  I love her strong rugby heroes who learn life is better with their heroines.

Lena Diaz   –  www.lenadiaz.com  –  @Amazon

The first chapter in Lena’s first book had me so chilled I knew it was going to be an exciting ride, and she didn’t disappoint.  Her Deadly Games books are my favorite romantic suspense series out there.

Carolyn Bradley  –   www.carolinebradley.net  – @Amazon 

Her debut novel, Heated Competition, should have been called BURNING HOT competition.  I was hooked by the type A personalities butting heads (and other things beneath the sheets!).


Questions for the Author:

Tell us about a moment when you felt or were aware of the power of romance.

Picture this:  A community theater production of The Sound of Music.  The nuns have 15 minutes of stage time in the 2+ hour show.  So what do they do when they’re not singing in Latin?  Read.

On the cover is one hot highlander and lots of plaid.  Reading it is a quiet girl (definitely not me) who is in her first show.  She keeps to herself.  Until the stage manager teases her about the bodice ripper, and the nuns bond over our favorite romance novels.

(And an aside – for those of you who are like – but Jamie isn’t on Outlander’s cover!  This book must have been a first edition paperback.  This sucker was OLD.)

Tell us about an object that has powerful memories for you.

My husband is a homebody, while I’m more social.  When we moved in together *cough* years ago, I still went out at night with friends, and he would still stay home.  I began to notice – if it was dark when I came home, he always turned on the front light for me.

It became a symbol.  He loves me.  Even when we’re not together, he’s thinking about me.  He could be sawing wood when I get home, but it doesn’t matter, because that beacon means I was on his mind.  To me, that one gesture, means I am loved.

There have been moments. Early in our marriage, I told him I love when he leaves the light on for me.  AND THE NEXT DAY HE FORGOT!  I came in the house all pouty faced, but he made it up to me.  And I’m ashamed to admit that he so rarely comes home when it’s dark that I often forget to turn the light on for him.  (But I do other things to show my love!  Like bake chocolate chip cookies and rub his back! But not at the same time.)

We’ll have been married 20 years at the end of August, and even now, if it’s dark when I come home, that light will still shine for me.

Tell us about a word that has power for you.

There are nice words and pleasant words, passionate words and heated words, and then there are the words developed as part of a relationship that can be all types of words at once.

For me, that word is Mehshum.

I can’t remember its origin, but I have memories of it being used.  Boyfriend (now husband) and I would snuggle, with one of us saying it as we got physically closer (meh meh meh meh mehshum).  Or when one of us had something the other one wanted (meyshum?).  Or even in the midst of an argument when we knew we had lost (meyshum!).

It’s our private language, just for us.  And it means whatever we want.

Tell us about a powerful book you read this year (or one that’s so powerful you’ve never forgotten it).

Julie Cross  –   www.juliecrossbooks.com  Letters to Nowhere

Ever read a book and were totally blown away by how much you loved it?  When all you did was yammer to people about how amazing the book was – the characters, the story, the happily ever after?  That for me was Letters to Nowhere.  I expected a good read – and what I got was a gift.

Pulled heartstrings and heartfelt and heartbreaking and heart thumping and all things heart.  I wish the hero was ten years older (it’s a YA novel, which I normally don’t read) and existed in real life.  He truly gets the heroine. He was sweet and compassionate and all things a good hero should be.  Like the kind of person I’d want my kids to be.  Watching the heroine grow and adapt was emotional and you rooted for her the whole time.  She was relatable and real and deserved her happy ending.

No otherworldly creatures.  No jet setting billionaires.  No dirty talking motorcycle men.  Just strong writing with characters so relatable and a love story done so well that it’s followed me for the past three years.

Tell us about a person who’s had a powerful influence on your life.

“No one here is going to care if you’re bald, Abby,” said my former coworker.

It was 2006.  I had just had a mastectomy to rid myself of stage II breast cancer, and was contemplating which wig to wear during chemo.  And she was so right.

Aside from having to be careful about my head getting a sunburn (yay, Florida summers!), being au natural was the best thing I could have done.  It showed my kids I had nothing to hide.  My shining beacon let strangers know what I was going through, and got many a high five from my sisters in illness.  And I wouldn’t have done it without my coworker casually blowing off my baldness.

Also because of this, I had my own words of encouragement to offer women who followed after me.  I hope I gave some comfort and strength to those fighting this disease.

All because of that one sentence.

 

Main Drawing:

Abigail is generously giving away an e-book of either of her backlist titles, winners choice of backtitles. To enter, leave a comment below by 11:59 pm PST August 10, 2017. (open to US and Canada.)

She is also contributing to the US bundles, as well as the tote & cup combo! (see below for more information)

There are many more drawings too—including international book bundles! See the bottom of the post for more information.

#LoveRomance #ReadARomance

 

 


Abigail Sharpe is a Boston-bred Yankee now eating grits and saying “y’all” in North Central Florida. She dreamed more of being a stage actress or joining the CIA than being an author. While she still enjoys participating in community theater productions and singing karaoke, the secret-agent career was replaced by hours at her computer, writing passionate and playful contemporary romance.

Her first novel, Who Wants to Marry a Cowboy, was a Golden Heart finalist and was released by Grand Central in 2013.  Her current work in progress, Moonshine and Magnolias, is about two cousins and a friend who run a plantation-turned Inn.

When she’s not writing, she can be found wearing a corset and singing bawdy songs with Just Desserts, an a cappella musical comedy act, at places that won’t throw them out. Abigail lives with her husband, two kids, and one crazy princess puppy.

 

Learn more:

www.abigailsharpe.com    |    Facebook     |     Twitter @AbigailSharpe

 

Buy Abigail’s books:

availableon-amazon       availableon-nook    availableon-kobo

*Please note that the Amazon button, most cover images and many text links connect to a Read-A-Romance Month affiliate portal. Thanks so much for your help & support!

#LoveRomance   #The PowerofRomance    #ReadARomance


MORE DRAWINGS!

Each RARM post will have one main drawing each day (posted above). Authors are also contributing to weekly (US only) bundles, which will be drawn at the end of the week. Each bundle will consist of at least five books and the amount of bundles will depend on the amount of books the authors contribute.

(Abigail is contributing to the US and international bundles, as well as the cup & tote giveaway .)

To enter to win these bundles, send an email to Week1@ReadARomanceMonth.com with “Bundles” in the signature line. (1 entry per email address per week)

International friends!

Rather than individual drawings off posts, this year we’ll do sets of books, 3+, depending on how many authors contribute. To enter, send an email to Week1@ReadARomanceMonth.com with “International” in the signature line. (1 entry per email address per week)

Week 1 contests are through Aug. 8

For the 5th Annual Read-A-Romance Month, many of the contributing authors  are supporting an extra-special drawing – high quality tote bags and mugs printed with a fun, pro-romance image (see below).

Read-A-Romance Month, through the generous support of many of the authors, is giving away at least 30 mug & tote combos.

Plus, at least two lucky winners will win a Read-A-Romance Month “Month of Books” Mega Bundle, consisting of 31 books!

To enter these exciting drawings,  send an email to August@ReadARomanceMonth.com (US only, apologies to international friends – though keep an eye out later in the month.

(US only, apologies to international friends – though keep an eye out later in the month. I may include an international cup/tote combo.)

You will not be automatically added to a newsletter, and I promise not to sell or give your email addresses to anyone. I do reserve the right to send you an invitation to sign up for my newsletter, which will also have opportunities to win more prizes and great romance reading tips!

 

Check out all three great posts everyday in August at ReadARomanceMonth.com.  Or you can find the posts on the RARM Facebook page.  Also consider joining the Read-A-Romance Book Club page, where we discuss romance of all kinds and will have drawings and events throughout the year.

#LoveRomance  #HappyReading  #ReadARomance

  • Sue G.

    Yay band! All three of my daughters were in the band! In fact, my youngest is trying out for The Ohio State Marching Band this weekend as a sousaphone (tuba)! Fingers and toes are all crossed!

    Also, congrats on beating cancer! One of my best friends had a mastectomy in 2007 and is cancer free! 🙂 <3

    • Abigail Sharpe

      Yay all around! I’m crossing my fingers for your daughter. I’ve seen clips of the Ohio State band and it’s a-maz-ing!

      And who-hoo to your friend!

  • Becky Rabalais

    Love the special word she shares with her husband.

    • Abigail Sharpe

      <3

  • rebecca moe

    I love your made-up word! We had one as a family when I was growing up, and always said if one of us was kidnapped, that would be the way that the others knew it was really us and we were still alive. (Yeah, we talked about weird stuff at the dinner table. And that wasn’t even on the weird side of the spectrum.)

    Thanks for sharing!

    • Abigail Sharpe

      I must know what this word is!
      And I must know what other weird things you talked about!

      • rebecca moe

        LOL! It was “kweet” which was just “can we eat?” said really fast (dessert, usually…because, dessert) though eventually we’d expand it to “kweet, kwat, kwote” I have no idea how or why that version actually started.

        As for the rest, are you sure you want to know? My mother was a bacteriologist, and the head of a county health lab, so you can just imagine some of the stories she came home with. One of her jobs was to test bats that came into people’s homes for rabies…and they had to be dead when she did. Not the most dinner friendly convo. Another time we had a “who has the most/best scars” contest like in the Lethal Weapon movie (3? Maybe? But no sex involved, because, family dinner). I’m not sure why we bothered, because my dad had had multiple open heart surgeries so of course he was going to win. We had to try, though.

        Again, the tip of the iceberg…

        • Abigail Sharpe

          Dinner time at your house sounds…. uh… fun?

          • rebecca moe

            LOL, sometimes…it was fun to have unsuspecting people over for meals, that’s for sure 😉

  • Pamby50

    I love the story about your son playing at a Veteran’s Day ceremony. I love seeing videos of people from that generation still out there jitterbugging. They come from a time when you cherished the time you spend together. No phones with apps or social media. Hand holding, dinners together, reading or just listening to music.

    • Abigail Sharpe

      It was so sweet to watch. I’ve given up trying to get hubby to dance with me at weddings.

      Though we do play Words with Friends together… 🙂

  • Booklover

    Your story about your coworker and your baldness brought tears to my eyes.

    • Abigail Sharpe

      I doubt she knows the impact that statement made. I did tell her, but to her, it was probably just an everyday thing.

  • Ellen

    I love the porch light story. My husband has ours on a timer. Little actions mean so much.

    • Abigail Sharpe

      Awwww, that’s sweet! I think I’d harass my husband if he put ours on a timer. *laugh* although it would help *me* when he goes out…

  • Glenda

    I”ve long believed the little things mean more in the long run than the grand gestures.

    • Abigail Sharpe

      YES! Grand gestures can be nice, but the little things are the I’ve-been-thinking-about-you moments.

  • Nicole Marie

    Great post, thanks for sharing your story.

    • Abigail Sharpe

      You’re welcome! Thanks for stopping by.

  • Abigail Sharpe

    I put notes in his suitcase when he takes a business trip. 🙂

  • Kezia King

    I agree, romance is in the small gestures- The things that may not matter to anyone else. 🙂 Thanks for sharing.