Shannon here: Linda Fulkerson shares insight into her real-life romance, her characters’ romance in her Contemporary Romance novella, A Pennie for Your Thoughts, which is included in the Candy Cane Wishes and Saltwater Dreams novella. Comment or answer the question in any post dated Sept 28th – Oct 12th to enter the drawing for a copy. Deadline: Oct 23rd, 11:59 pm central time. Here’s Linda:
- What’s the most romantic present your spouse ever bought for you?
Years ago, I wrote a song. Soon after that for Valentine’s Day, my husband bought me time in a recording studio including a backup band so I could record the song.
- Who is most romantic, you or your spouse?
- What is the most caring thing your spouse has ever done for you?
I could probably list a hundred things here. He helped me take care of my parents and later my brother before they went to heaven. But when I learned my friend was wanting to sell her publishing company, I was super excited at the possibility of buying it and becoming a traditional publisher. Even though it was a significant investment, my husband didn’t hesitate and has encouraged me from the beginning.
- Do you and your spouse have a favorite romantic vacation destination?
We love RV travel, but our favorite get-away is Cove Lake, near Paris, Arkansas. It’s peaceful and usually the campground isn’t busy. We like to just sit and watch the lake and enjoy God’s creation.
- Where did you and your spouse go for your honeymoon?
I know I said he was the most romantic, and he is, but when we were discussing where to go on our honeymoon (we only had a long weekend, so no time for a big trip), he asked, “Have you ever been to Bass Pro Shop?” So, we went to Springfield, Missouri. We later spent a couple of nights at the Bass Pro Shop resort in the Memphis Pyramid. That was one of the nicest hotels we’ve ever been to.
Character Interview (Pennie):
- Are you open to your own romance?
I’m not sure. I was, until my ex-fiancé broke off our engagement just weeks before the wedding. He said it was for my own good, but I still love him. It would be a long time, maybe never, before I’m ready to think about dating another man.
- What’s the number one quality you’d require in a mate?
I want a man who is honest. Jared was the perfect man for me. Even when he broke up with me, he was honest about it and explained he was afraid he spent too much time focusing on his career to be a good husband. I just wish he’d asked for my input before making the decision to end it. I know he was a super busy man, but he always took the time to make me feel special.
- What’s the one habit or lifestyle that would make you run the other way?
Someone who is fake.
- Where do you dream of spending your honeymoon?
My foster mom, Dottie, used to tell me stories about her time in Hawaii. It sounds like the most romantic place on Earth. That’s where Jared and I had planned to go on our honeymoon. I still have the travel package he bought. He said I could use it, but I’m not sure … I mean, it was supposed to be our honeymoon trip.
- What would be the best gift a potential mate could buy for you?
I’m a pretty simple girl. I don’t really need a lot of gifts. An evening on the porch swing, staring at the lake is the perfect date for me. But my cabin does need a new roof …
Excerpt from A Pennie for your Thoughts by Linda Fulkerson:
Three days later, Pennie followed her fellow passengers through Daniel K. Inouye International Airport’s open-air walkway leading from the gate to the baggage claim area. A floral scent wafted through the air. Plumeria, she remembered from her impromptu crash course of what first-time visitors to Oahu should expect.
She stood, mesmerized by the sea of baggage floating across the conveyor belt, when a series of unexpected and unwelcomed thoughts flooded her mind. Jared should be standing next to her. She should be giddy with delight, a bride on her honeymoon. Tears fuzzed her vision, transforming the stream of colorful suitcases into a blurry blob.
Pennie dabbed her eyes. After a few blinks, she recognized her bag and yanked it toward the edge of the conveyor. One of the wheels caught on the carousel’s side, and she tugged hard to free it. A loud pop echoed, and she flew one way as the wheel flew the other.
“Woah there, little lady,” a voice boomed behind her as a pair of arms balanced her. “You okay?”
She steadied herself and nodded, realizing her rescuer was a soldier. “Th-thanks.” Pennie pointed to his uniform. “And thanks for your service.”
“My pleasure.” He gave a slight bow. “You here on vacation?”
“A sort of working vacation, yes.”
“If it’s your first time in Hawaii, I can give you a tour.” The young man winked.
Pennie wondered if crashing her rear on the floor would have been a better option than being rescued. “Um. Thanks, but I’m good.”
He chuckled. “I bet you are.”
Heat rose up Pennie’s neck. “I have to go.” She spun away from him and jerked her hobbled luggage to an upright position, wishing she’d trimmed her packing list.
Pennie drug the suitcase behind her. Each whump-whump of the lopsided bag grated against her already frazzled nerves. After scanning the area for one of those luggage cart rental racks and finding none, she hoisted the crippled case in her arms, balancing it along with her purse, laptop case, and backpack, and waddled toward the rental car counter. By the time she neared the area, she was huffing from hauling her bulging bag. Pennie set the suitcase down to catch her breath and noticed a man at the counter accepting a set of keys from the clerk. He brushed his hand through a head full of short-cropped curls dark enough to contrast with his well-tanned skin and rushed through the exit.
About Linda: USMC veteran Linda Fulkerson became interested in writing while working as a copyeditor and typesetter at a small-town weekly newspaper. She has since been published in several magazines and newspapers, including a two-year stint as a sports writer. Linda is the author of two novels and seven non-fiction books, four of which are coloring books for writers. In 2020, she purchased Mantle Rock Publishing’s backlist as well as acquiring all MRP’s future contracts and founded Scrivenings Press LLC.
About the novella collection – Candy Cane Wishes and Saltwater Dreams by Amy Anguish, Hope Toler Dougherty, Linda Fulkerson, Regina Rudd Merrick and Shannon Taylor Vannatter
Mistletoe Make-believe by Amy Anguish – Charlie Hill’s family thinks his daughter Hailey needs a mom–to the point they won’t get off his back until he finds her one. Desperate to be free from their nagging, he asks a stranger to pretend she’s his girlfriend during the holidays. When romance author Samantha Arwine takes a working vacation to St. Simons Island over Christmas, she never dreamed she’d be involved in a real-life romance. Are the sparks between her and Charlie real? Or is her imagination over-acting … again?
A Hatteras Surprise – Ginny Stowe spent years tending a childhood hurt that dictated her college study and work. Can time with an island visitor with ties to her past heal lingering wounds and lead her toward a happy Christmas … and more? Ben Daniels intends to hire a new branch manager for a Hatteras Island bank, then hurry back to his promotion and Christmas in Charlotte. Spending time with a beautiful local, however, might force him to adjust his sails.
A Pennie for Your Thoughts by Linda Fulkerson – When the Lakeshore Homeowner’s Association threatens to condemn the cabin Pennie Vaughn inherited from her foster mother, her only hope of funding the needed repairs lies in winning a travel blog contest. Trouble is, Pennie never goes anywhere. Should she use the all-expenses paid Hawaiian vacation offered to her by her ex-fiancé? The trip that would have been their honeymoon?
Mr. Sandman by Regina Rudd Merrick – Events manager Taylor Fordham’s happily-ever-after was snatched from her, and she’s saying no to romance and Christmas. When she meets two new friends—the cute new chef at Pilot Oaks and a contributor on a sci-fi fan fiction website who enjoys debate—her resolve begins to waver. Just when she thinks she can loosen her grip on thoughts of love, a crisis pulls her back. There’s no way she’s going to risk her heart again.
Coastal Christmas Charade by Shannon Taylor Vannatter – Lark Pendleton is banking on a high-society wedding to make her grandparent’s inn at Surfside Beach, Texas the venue to attract buyers. Tasked with sprucing up the inn, she hires Jace Wilder, whose heart she once broke. When the bride and groom turn out to be Lark’s high school nemesis and ex-boyfriend, she and Jace embark on a pretend romance to save the wedding. But when real feelings emerge, can they overcome past hurts?
Check out the book trailer: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-spm0_wQcZ0
Can’t wait for the drawing? Worried you won’t win? Interested in Linda’s other titles?
Get your copies now!
Question for Readers: Do you like to travel? Where is your favorite or dream destination? Would you prefer hotels or RV’s?
Come back Oct 15th for MaryAnn Diorio!