Music Monday: Berlin ~ Original song for 12 cellos (and a kick drum),The Piano Guys

I listened to several things while writing this week — my birdsongs cd, silence, and my Music to Write By YouTube playlist.  Obviously, today’s selection is from that playlist. 🙂  I kept randomly selecting a place to begin the list and hit shuffle. This song (and The Assassination of Jessie James OST ) popped up in just about every shuffle.  Both songs helped set the correct mood for part of what I was writing — and boy, did I do a lot of writing this week!

ThePianoGuys. “Berlin – Original Song for 12 Cellos (and a Kick Drum) – The Piano Guys.”YouTube. YouTube, 10 Apr. 2013. Web. 07 May 2017.

In fact, it was a record-setting week for word count, I believe. (Seeing as I have just started keeping records, it seems safe to say that. LOL).

How record-setting was it?

Well, Caroline’s story started the week with about 5,000 words and ended the week with just over 17,000 words! Specifically, I wrote 12,961 words!  (And that does not include the few hundred I wrote for this Tuesday’s post.  :)) But, I had some goals I wanted to reach, and I pushed hard to achieve them.  And, having hit them, I felt very accomplished at the end of the week. (I had to use that word since it was a Caroline story I was working on. 😉 )

What were those goals?

  1. Finish the first draft of Caroline’s story — which by the way now has a title (and as of Sunday afternoon an ebook cover)
  2. Finish the final edits for At All Costs.
  3. Write and schedule my post for Austen Authors, which includes an excerpt from At All Costs and an excerpt from Caro’s story that I have not shared here.

All three can be crossed off the to-do list!

So, looking forward to the week ahead, I will now need to start first round edits on Caro’s story and keep plugging away at getting At All Costs ready for publication.  And, then, well, I guess I have to pick a new writing project to start so I have something to share with you next Monday. Hmmm….I wonder what it will be?

One quick reminder before I get to the excerpt — With the Colonel’s Help will begin posting this Thursday. 🙂  I am looking forward to it!

And a little story note:  I took the name suggestions of Franklin and Rhett but flipped them (because I wanted to call the hero by his last name and enjoyed calling him Rhett instead of Franklin when I was typing 🙂 ) Thank you, Patty and Julie, for your help with that! 🙂

I think the story excerpt below gives a good indication of Mr. Rhett’s personality — although, it is a teaser and ends with a question unanswered. 🙂

EXCERPT FROM Better Than She Deserved: Continue reading Music Monday: Berlin ~ Original song for 12 cellos (and a kick drum),The Piano Guys

Music Monday: Shape of My Heart, 2Cellos

2Cellos. “2CELLOS – Shape Of My Heart [OFFICIAL VIDEO].” YouTube. 09 Dec. 2014. Web. 08 Jan. 2017.

Happy Monday! Isn’t this a beautiful piece of music to start the week? It is one of my favourites to listen to while writing. (Yes, I know I have a lot of favourites, but they are all so good. 🙂 )

I chose to feature this video today for a couple of reasons that are related to what I was working on this week.  First, the plucking of the strings makes me think of traveling by horse or carriage and the constant clip-clop of hooves as you roll or ride along for hours. There was a good deal of travel in what I was writing this week because Bingley had some business to take care of.

Second, the visuals of floating and burning papers made me think of things happening in the plot.  The business our hero left to complete was not of a pleasant nature, and it was the sort of which you do not really wish to have documentation.  (Yes, I am talking about Bingley as the hero here. There is something surprising hidden behind that pleasant exterior.)

I finished the story except for an epilogue, and, thanks to the help of a reader and friend on Facebook, I have a title for this fourth book in the Willow Hall Romance series. Yay!  The title is At All Costs, and I think it fits perfectly since the story, both for the hero and one of the “villains” (yes, one of them — there are several that cause trouble), is a story of fighting for and protecting your love at all costs.

I plan to write the epilogue in a few weeks after I have edited So Very Unexpected. That book is slated to be published on February 14, 2017, so I am busy doing the first round of edits so that I can send it to my first reader, fix what she tells me, and then send it on to my proofreaders/copy editors. This means the story has disappeared from the blog, but I have left a link to a two chapter preview on my Leenie B Books page. I am enjoying going back to this story after being away from it for about two months.  I still love Lydia!

I believe that is all the writing news I have for you today.  This week, I will be editing and working on my Austen Author’s blog post for next Tuesday (which will feature a giveaway).  Enjoy your week! Hopefully, you will get to stop by the blog on Wednesday and Thursday for a lovely painting and a full chapter of At All Costs. 

EXCERPT FROM At All Costs:  *Contains spoilers and a cliffhanger. 🙂 *

The sun was setting as Bingley and Richard wound their way through the streets of London.  They had paused long enough upon arrival to leave their bags at Bingley’s townhouse and for Bingley to stop at his solicitor’s office to check on the progress of marriage papers and a special license.  Now, however, he and Richard had left the favourable portion of town and were slowly making their way down toward the river. 

Bingley waved to some chap who was seated on a crate marking things off in his notebook. 

“She sails at dawn,” the man called. 

“Where to?” Bingley called back.  Continue reading Music Monday: Shape of My Heart, 2Cellos

Music Monday: Good King Wenceslas, The Irish Rovers

AlexanderRoublev. “The Irish Rovers. Good King Wenceslas.” YouTube. YouTube, 18 Dec. 2011. Web. 25 Dec. 2016.


This was one of my favourite carols as a child. Why? Because it told a story about a kind king.  I would listen to the carol, often singing along, as lovely images of a king and his page struggling through the snow would play in my mind.

I could feel the wind blowing and would shiver as the cold seeped through the pages clothing chilling his blood.  I could see the peasant stooping and adding another twig to the pile in his arms.  I would imagine his family huddled around the hearth at his home waiting for his return. I could see the page taking large strides to match those of his master as he followed behind the king sheltered from the wind and snow. I would smile at the thought of the surprise visit and gift from the king to the peasant.  And I would be reminded that I was blessed.

I still think about these things when I hear this song, and it is still a reminder of just how blessed I am.


I have spent more time reading this week than writing.  In the midst of the busyness of the season, combined with the release of A Very Mary Christmas and hosting a book launch giveaway on Austen Authors, finding time to write was challenging.  Finding time to read was less challenging, so I reread parts of some books that I have read several times before.  It’s a thing I do when I find a book that I particularly enjoy and am drawn back to.  I reread these stories with a purpose — to discover the story or character development techniques the author has used to engage my interest.  I like to think of it as studying at the feet of the masters. 🙂

However, it was not all reading this week.  Below is a small portion of what I was able to write.  I am still working on Willow Hall, Book 4.  I am getting into the things are starting to come to that ultimate climax before the resolution portion of the story, so read at your own risk. 🙂  It will be many weeks before this portion shows up in a Thursday post.

STORY EXCERPT Willow Hall Romance, Book 4:

Later that evening, Bingley tapped his fingers on the table next to the letter he had written. He was uncertain if this was the best course of action.  Perhaps he should just take a trip to town to speak with Mr. ___.  Letters were tricky items.  There was no guarantee that the intended recipient would be the only recipient of the news in a missive.  He scanned the words again.  Continue reading Music Monday: Good King Wenceslas, The Irish Rovers

Music Monday: Beautiful Romantic Music (101), Peder B. Helland

Soothing Relaxation. “Beautiful Romantic Music: Relaxing Music, Piano Music, Violin Music, Guitar Music, Cello Music ★101.” YouTube. YouTube, 07 Nov. 2016. Web. 03 Dec. 2016.

It is that time of year when I start to re-evaluate everything and decide if I wish to keep doing things as I have or make changes.  I am in the process of contemplating my posts here on this website, starting with the first post of the week — Music Monday.  In the past, I have often had a song that connected directly to a story because I often find inspiration in music — be it the lyrics or the emotions the melody evokes.  That has  not changed. I still find music very inspiring, and when I write, there is almost always some sort of music playing in the background.  So, I am still planning to share music on Mondays for now, but these posts will not always have a direct connection to the story on which I am working. They will rather be pieces that I have found inspiring and have had playing as I work — which is exactly what this week’s selection is. This week, I have been listening to this particular piece of music (in a shorter version, which I purchased on along with several other tracks by this composer.

And what have I been working on as this music plays?  Well, I am attempting to get a good portion of the new Thursday’s Three Hundred story sorted out. Another week of writing, and I think I should have it well underway and be able to tell if everything is working together as it should for the story.  So, do I post a small excerpt from that story here on Monday as I have all the other times when doing a music/story connection post?  Sure. Why not?

Remember, this story is under construction and an excerpt here may or may not show up in the version that gets posted later…although I am working very diligently to make sure that I am only writing useable material. 🙂

This small piece is from a section where Bingley has had a rough day and is drowning his sorrows. It is also the beginning of a planning session by a rather sloshed Bingley and a slightly tipsy Colonel Fitzwilliam about what might be the best tactic to use if Bingley wishes to get Jane to accept him. 🙂

A Story Excerpt from Willow Hall, Book 4 (I’m still working on choosing a title 😉 ):

“What has you looking as if you ate a piece of bad fish?” asked Richard, taking a seat in Pemberley’s game room next to Bingley. 

Bingley shrugged and gulped the last of his drink.  “You did not stay at Matlock?”

Richard sighed and scrubbed his face with his hands.  “My sister is the center of a house party, and although her friends seem to enjoy my company, I do not enjoy theirs.  The last of the guest should leave by week’s end. I shall visit for a longer period of time after that.  As it was, yesterday and this morning was long enough for my mother to begin speaking of my marrying.” 

“It is a sad lot for us men,” muttered Bingley.

“Marriage?” Richard unbuttoned his waistcoat.  Continue reading Music Monday: Beautiful Romantic Music (101), Peder B. Helland