Ginny Baird's Blog: The Story Behind the Story...

August 19, 2014

Ginny BairdIt’s that time of year when moms and dads fill backpacks and send their children off to school, armed with fresh supplies of all kinds—ranging from marble notebooks to new pencils and erasers. As our offspring grow, the supply list gets more demanding. Eventually, they need calculators; some high school students even may insist it’s uncool to ride the bus and beg for second-hand cars. But nothing tops the expense of sending a child to college, and not just in financial terms. Think of the emotional toll.

Sending a child to Kindergarten for the first time produces a similar level of anxiety. When my eldest went, I recall fretting all day over what they were doing with her. Was she happy and feeling secure? Was the teacher understanding, and were the other kids friendly? Don’t even get me started on my worries over recess or lunch. Yes, I was a “Mommy mess”… at least for those first few weeks. Now, several autumns later, I find myself at the tail end of sending kids back to school. Our youngest leaves for his first year of university this Saturday.

Although he’s nearly nineteen, I find myself with a familiar set of fears: about his happiness, the instructors he’ll have, and the bonds he’ll form with his peers. And yet, in my heart, I know he’ll be okay. We’ve prepared him well, and as the “caboose” in this large blended family, he feels more than ready to go. He’s had the benefit of watching others forge ahead, and understands very clearly what to expect. Though I’m sure there are bound to be surprises, for him and his parents, too. Fingers crossed that they’ll be mostly happy ones… that he spends his free time well, and that the food is good!

Best wishes to all you parents out there as you undergo similar struggles in launching your little ones, whatever their ages might be. May this be the start of the best school year ever, for all parties concerned.

The Getaway Groom (Summer Grooms Series Book 4) by Ginny BairdHelp me celebrate this landmark time of year by entering my Back to School Giveaway! Win a signed print copy of new release The Getaway Groom (Summer Grooms Series Book 4) by entering before September 1st.
https://www.goodreads.com/giveaway/sh...

Congrats to Giveaway winners: Richard from Mobile, AL and D D from North Hollywood, CA! Your prizes have been sent. :)
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Published on August 19, 2014 12:47 • 443 views

July 6, 2014

Christmas in July fun!
Ginny Baird is hosting two great Giveaways and one big sale!
Win an autographed copy of BABY, BE MINE right here at Goodreads.
https://www.goodreads.com/giveaway/sh...
Enter Christmas in July Rafflecopter for more great prizes from Ginny and other awesome authors!
http://tinyurl.com/lsuvefp

The Holiday Brides Collection  Books 1-4 (Holiday Brides, #1-4) by Ginny BairdThough it’s balmy outside, believe or not I’m thinking wintery thoughts. This may be due to my recent efforts in bringing my Holiday Brides Series to audiobook. At this writing, Books 1 – 5 are available in audio format, with the Holiday Brides Collection (Books 1 -4) slated for release in audiobook soon. It’s been such a thrill hearing these stories come to life, and narrator Susan Soriano did a stellar job nailing the sweet, humorous – and often spunky – tone of each book. Just last week, we completed our current collaborations on the series. In celebration, I’d like to offer something special to you.

For a limited time in July, the Kindle, NOOK, and iBook edition of The Holiday Brides Collection (Books 1 – 4) will be available for an incredible sales price of just $0.99. This is $7.00 off the list price for the collection, and a $10.00 savings compared to buying these titles individually. If you’ve not yet read the first four books in the series, I hope you’ll take advantage and bring a little holiday cheer into your world this season. For details on the audiobooks and where to find them, please visit my website. http://www.ginnybairdromance.com/holi...

You can get The Holiday Brides Collection (Books 1 – 4)
On sale for $0.99 at the following retailers now:

Amazon
http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00BELOQMW

Barnes and Noble
http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/the-h...

Apple iTunes
https://itunes.apple.com/us/book/holi...

Enjoy, and happy reading! May you experience that special Christmas magic all year through.

Ginny

Specials end July 28, 2014.

Giveaway winners have been posted on FB. Congrats to all!
https://www.facebook.com/GinnyBairdRo...
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Published on July 06, 2014 12:19 • 1,421 views
The Getaway Groom (Summer Grooms Series Book 4) by Ginny Baird New Release from Ginny Baird!
Summer Grooms Series Book 4: The Getaway Groom
A feisty Southern belle meets a big-city bachelor when they’re both on the run from heartache, and sparks fly.

Sneak Peek 2 of 2!
Read Chapter One https://www.goodreads.com/author_blog...

Chapter Two

Ivy Green carefully scooped the froth from the milk steamer into the cappuccino cup. Old man Winters was waiting on his morning fix. “Coming right up, Walt!” she called with a pleasant smile, carrying the cup over. Walt Winters had been coming to the Coffee Connection every day for the past two years and eight months. Nobody knew why he’d suddenly opted to make this a part of his daily routine. He’d started Ivy’s third week here and was always waiting outside when she came to open up the shop.
She placed the cup on his table, and he lowered the newspaper he regularly bought from the box outside. His beard and mustache were white to match his hair, but they were neatly trimmed. “When you going to get yourself a boyfriend?” Walt’s eyes were as dark as coffee beans. It had occurred to Ivy more than once that he must have been a handsome man in his prime.
She smiled and set down the two packs of natural brown sugar he always took in his coffee. “As soon as the right guy comes along.” And doesn’t run out on me, Ivy thought to herself but didn’t say. She noticed movement behind him and stared out the shop’s front window, spying a guy in a tuxedo racing by. Weird. Wait! There went another one… No, another three! And a middle-aged man! Finally, another young guy brought up the rear, shouting after them.
Walt turned to watch as well. “Some kind of contest going on?”
“I don’t know.” Ivy glanced around the small space, which stood empty. Walt was always the first one here, and no one else had arrived. “I don’t know what that was, truthfully.”
Walt rattled his paper and grumbled, “Looked suspiciously like a groom under the gun.”
“What?”
“A runaway. You know, the type that skedaddles.”
Yeah, Ivy knew that type exactly. “I’ll get your water,” she offered, walking back to the counter.
Since it was only her and Walt, she left the counter flip-top up while she went to work filling a plastic cup with ice. But the ice dispenser acted up again, spitting a pile of cubes onto the floor. Great. Ivy groaned. Now she’d have to mop that up before Eustis arrived. Eustis was her boss and very particular.
A blast of warm air blew toward her, and Ivy looked up, seeing a man had bolted in the door. He was about thirty with coal-black hair and a chiseled chin. His deep blue eyes were panicked. She suddenly realized it was the guy in the tuxedo, the one who’d been leading the parade of men. “Please!” he said, breathing heavily. “You’ve got to…” His gaze darted to the front window, where the group of others tore by. Before Ivy knew it, he was with her behind the bar.
“You can’t be back here!” she screeched.
Walt leapt to his feet. “Young man!” But before he could respond, the guy began skidding on melted ice.
“Arghh!” he cried as his dress shoes plowed through puddles, then started sliding. He went down hard with a thud, landing flat on his back, arms outstretched.
Ivy stared in horror at the terribly hot guy in a tux. Even in those fancy clothes, he looked buff. She thought he was tall, at least taller than her by a good three or four inches. The café door whooshed open again, and an agitated middle-aged man burst into the room. “Did he come in here?” He had a crazed look on his face, like he was ready to deliver a pounding. Ivy was strictly opposed to violence and certainly didn’t want any occurring right in front of her.
“Who?” she asked, noting Walt was inching his way toward the bar.
“That rogue who was supposed to marry my daughter!”
Ivy peeked at the man pressing his palms together in a pleading motion. He sure didn’t look like the set-the-date-then-ditch type. Then again, Ivy’s judgment wasn’t spot-on in that department.
“Missy, I asked you a question!” the father of the bride demanded.
Walt took a step toward him. “Hold it right there, fella.”

Mark stared up at the dark-haired beauty, his heart pounding. He didn’t know how he’d found himself in this position, but now his life was in her hands. If she turned him over to Sandra’s dad, who knew what would be left of Mark afterward. Probably not much. He certainly couldn’t fight back against an old man.
The woman flagged a palm toward the door and spoke softly. “I’d appreciate it if you didn’t raise your voice in here.”
Mark could hear Sandra’s dad huff on the far side of the counter. “I apologize. It’s just been a very… What I mean is, it’s a simple question. Yes or no?”
The brunette set one hand on her hip and motioned around the room with the other. She wore jeans and a dark T-shirt that very nearly matched her hair. She had bangs and pulled the rest of her hair back in a ponytail, exposing smooth cheekbones. “What does it look like to you?”
“We haven’t seen a thing,” another voice said in corroboration. It was then that Mark remembered the guy sitting in the corner when he’d blown in.
A poof of wind ruffled some rags tied to the cabinet handles above him, and yet another voice called, “Dad! We think we saw him! He went that way!” It was Jeb, Mark realized. Sandra’s oldest brother. Then, in a flash, there were more scurrying footfalls, and they were gone.
“Who says nothing happens in Rosemont?” the old dude asked.
Instead of responding, the woman stared down at Mark with chocolate-colored eyes. They were mesmerizing, unforgettable…captivating Mark in an uncanny way. His heart stilled, then skipped a beat as she held his gaze. She twisted her lips to study him an extra long moment. Her lips were a luscious raspberry red. When she parted them to speak, Mark wasn’t sure what to expect. At the very least, he anticipated a scolding. In contrast, her tone was light. “Don’t you think you’d better say who you are?”
Mark partially righted himself on his elbows and shot her a humble grin. “Mark Delacroix. Nice to—”
The bottom of her low-heeled boot met his chest and pressed him back down. One eyebrow arched dangerously as she loomed over him. “Delacroix?” She angled her chin toward the front and spoke to the older guy Mark guessed was still there. “Call back the F.O.B.”
“F.O.B.?” the old guy asked.
“Father of the bride.”
Mark sputtered from his pose on the ground. “Wait! Hang on…”
But she cut him off with a cold stare. “Seems we have a traitor in our midst.”
“Traitor?” Mark croaked, trying to sit up again. She pinned him down—hard. Man, that girl was strong. Especially when she was angry. But why was she so incensed? “Listen, we appear to have gotten off on the wrong—” A boot heel dug in. “Argh! Foot!”
“What are you doing to him back there?” the old man wondered.
“Putting him in his place,” the woman answered. “Someone’s got to do it.”
“But why?” Mark squeaked.
Suddenly the old guy was at the counter, his dark eyes staring down at Mark as well.
“It’s not what you’ve done, but what you’re trying to do.” Her eyes were smoldering, fierce. “Single-handedly ruin this town.”
The door swooshed open, and the brunette stared toward it with a gasp. “Austin?”
“Hi, Ivy. Nice to see you too,” a husky voice returned. Mark froze in place, the boot still centered on his chest.
The color in her cheeks deepened. “What brings you to town?”
“Haven’t you heard?” he asked, drawing nearer. “I’m getting married.”
“Don’t!” Ivy warned.
“Don’t what?”
“Take a step closer. I’ve just mopped the floor!”
“It doesn’t look wet.”
The older guy turned toward him. “It’s one of those new-fangled cleaning products. Insta-dry. Though you can never be sure.”
Mark had no clue what was going on but decided to play it safe by staying extra still. Maybe Ivy would get so distracted she’d forget all about him. Then he could stealthily slip out from under her boot and sneak away.
“Fine,” Austin said. “I can tell you want to get rid of me. Not that I’d been planning to stay.”
“Then why are you here?” the old man asked.
“To invite you to my wedding.”
“Me? But I don’t even know you.”
“Not you. Her.”
He must have stared straight at Ivy, because she seemed to be holding her breath. “That’s good of you,” she said with a smirk.
“Not that I’d really expect you’d come. It was Caroline’s idea.”
“Caroline?”
“My fiancée.”
“I see.”
“Of course, Caroline said it would be hard on you. We’ll understand if—”
“Hard?” Ivy cut in. “I hardly think so.”
“You’ll come, then?” Austin sputtered.
“My signif and I wouldn’t miss it for the world.”
“What the heck is a signif?” Austin demanded.
“Significant other,” Ivy said primly. “That is, if you’re sure it won’t bother you seeing me with him?”
“I didn’t know you were dating anybody.”
Ivy gingerly lifted her boot off Mark’s chest and glanced down.
“It hasn’t really been your business to know, now has it?”
“No, but—”
“Why don’t you just run along? I’ve got things to do here, and we’re opening in ten minutes.”
“Well, I sure didn’t know you were seeing anyone,” Austin grumbled. “This will be news to Caroline too.”
“Likely make her happy,” the old man quipped.
“Yes,” Ivy added. “We’d hate for the bride to be jealous on her wedding day.”
“Jealous?” Austin asked, befuddled.
“Didn’t Ivy ask you to leave?” the old man questioned.
“Yeah, sure. I’m going,” Austin said, making his retreat.
The old guy glanced at Ivy and whispered, “Got yourself into a pickle now.”

Mark was just sitting up when the door whooshed open again, and a woman’s high heels clickety-clacked across the room. What was this place? Grand Central Station? Before he could stand, a new person was peering down at him. She had springy red curls and a creamy complexion, with fine wrinkles surrounding her eyes. She stood beside the old man and shrieked.
“Heavens to Betsy! What have we here?”
“Mark Delacroix,” Ivy reported.
“Is that a fact?”
“Ran out on his bride,” the old man informed her.
“Well, well…” The redhead clucked her tongue and surveyed the damage. Mark noted for the first time he’d pulled over a napkin holder, a cup of ice, and a whole gallon of nonfat milk during his fall. The space around him was a disaster. “Aren’t you good at making a mess of things?”
To Mark’s surprise, his buddy Wayne peered over her shoulder. “There you are!” He glanced at the brunette, then down at the littered floor. “Did you do all that?”
Mark peeled himself off the floor, his tuxedo jacket sticking. He yanked it free, and it dripped with milk when he stood. “Wow,” Wayne said.
“I hope you’re going to clean that up,” the redhead added.
The next thing Mark knew, the helpful brunette was handing him a dustpan and broom. “I don’t believe I’ve had the pleasure,” he said smartly.
Her chocolate gaze met his. “The name is Ivy Green. But the pleasure’s not mine.”

While everyone in Rosemont had heard of Mark Delacroix, very few had met him. He’d swooped in under the cloak of night and bought out Chicken Fried Foods before anyone could say snap. Chicken Fried Foods was the mega packaging plant that employed most of the townsfolk. Now a swanky new beer-bottling place was going in, with tasting rooms and focus-group consultants from New York.
Had any thought been given to the hundreds of people who’d be put out of their jobs? No. Were there any plans to retrain them to work in the new business? No, again. Outsiders were being brought in from the north. Folks who yearned for a quieter way of life and clean country air for their children. What about the parents and kids who were already here? Ivy’s cousin Grace was on the staff of the local paper and had covered the whole disgusting story. The details of the deal that had gone public, anyway. It was astounding a man like Mark could even have friends. He apparently had one, because the other guy was helping him now, bending low to retrieve a wad of soppy paper towels.
“I think that about does it.” Mark accepted the dripping towels from his friend and dropped them in a large wastebasket. “Don’t tell me,” he said with a hint of sarcasm Ivy didn’t appreciate. “You want me to mop and shine too?” Why was he being cool to her? Wasn’t she the offended party? In fact, all of Rosemont was offended. To top it all off, he’d made a wreck of her shop.
She snatched back the broom and dustpan as he handed them over. “That will do for now,” she said, noting a few regulars stepping inside.
Ivy felt something warm grip her hand, then saw Mark had wrapped his fingers around hers where she held on to the broom. Ivy’s pulse fluttered. “I am sorry, you know. Sorry for ruining your day.”
“Well, you did pick up,” Eustis said from behind them. “That’s something.”
Mark raised his brow and waited. His friend must have been hovering somewhere in the background too. But Ivy couldn’t see him. She was too overwhelmed by Mark’s sea-blue gaze. It swept over her like waves in the ocean catching her up in its swell. His hand tightened around hers. “Thank you, though. Thanks for not giving me away.”
Heat crept up her chin and fanned across her cheeks. “I would say anytime, but…” He withdrew his grasp, and Ivy sucked in a breath. “I wouldn’t mean it.”
“Not that I blame you one bit. And, hey…” He glanced at her leg. “I’m sorry about that too. I’ll pay for the cleaning.” Ivy looked down, seeing for the first time her jeans had been splattered with milk and coffee.
“I do my own wash.”
His friend glanced at him and motioned toward the street with his chin. “My car’s not that far away. We should probably make a break for it.”
“Aren’t you even going to apologize?” Walt asked.
“But I already—”
“Not to Ivy,” Walt said. “To your bride.”

Now available!

Kindle
http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00LV4IQOQ

NOOK
http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/the-g...

iBooks
https://itunes.apple.com/us/book/the-...

Kobo
http://store.kobobooks.com/en-US/eboo...
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Published on July 06, 2014 08:21 • 981 views

July 5, 2014

The Getaway Groom (Summer Grooms Series Book 4) by Ginny BairdNew Release from Ginny Baird!
Summer Grooms Series Book 4: The Getaway Groom
A feisty Southern belle meets a big-city bachelor when they’re both on the run from heartache, and sparks fly.

Sneak Peek 1 of 2!

Chapter One

Mark Delacroix stood before the small chapel mirror and adjusted the blue bow tie that matched his eyes. The bridesmaid dresses were blue too. That had been Sandra’s idea. Mark figured it was a small sacrifice to make. That, plus trimming his charcoal hair extra short. And, oh yeah, eliminating his typical three-day stubble.
His buddy Wayne patted his shoulder and smiled at their reflections. “You almost look presentable.”
Mark raised his brow at his friend. “Scary, isn’t it?”
“Petrifying.”
Mark wondered if he was just having cold feet, or if something else was going on. This was supposed to be a great day. A spectacular event he was looking forward to. Though the church was small, the wedding was lavish. Sandra’d told him many times her dad had spent in the six figures on this bash. Mark almost wished she hadn’t shared those numbers. It made him feel, he didn’t know… Beholden.
“Look at it this way,” Wayne said. “By this time tomorrow, it will be over.”
“That’s what I’m worried about.”
Only his best man Wayne had the privilege of being in here. The other four groomsmen—all of them Sandra’s brothers—were waiting outside.
Wayne’s lips locked in a frown. “You’re not having second thoughts?”
Mark shrugged.
“Everybody’s got to get married sometime, right?”
“No.” Wayne met his gaze. “Listen, man, it’s not too late to stop it. The fat lady hasn’t sung yet.”
Just then they heard a woman’s voice rising in a high soprano. The song was “Ave Maria.” The ceremony had started. Mark swallowed hard.
He could do this, sure he could. Hadn’t Sandra said that the time was right, and neither of them was getting any younger? It was true they were both in their early thirties, and each had said they wanted to have children. Of course, when they’d had that conversation, they’d been talking in general.
By now, Sandra had planned the whole thing out. Where their kids would attend prep school, how the family would summer in the Hamptons, which Ivy League each of their offspring should shoot for… And there wasn’t even a baby yet!
Someone knocked on the door, and Wayne went to answer it. “Buddy,” he told Mark. “It’s time.”
Wayne pulled back the door and stepped aside with surprise. It wasn’t one of the groomsmen as expected. It was Sandra! She was dressed all in white in her designer gown, a thin veil flipped back over her head. “Ave Maria” was already on its second chorus.
“Isn’t this bad luck?” Wayne asked.
“Can I have a minute with Mark?” Her eyes were all big and goopy like she was going to break down crying. They were blue like her mom’s, and her wavy blonde hair was piled up under her veil.
“A minute’s about all you’ve got,” Wayne said, checking his cell. Then he exited and left them alone.
“Sandra?” Mark asked. “What’s going on?”
She scuttled over to him, her crinoline crunching.
“I couldn’t…go through with it, not without—”
“You’re calling off the wedding?”
“No.” She sniffed into the hanky in her hand. It was something that had belonged to her grandmother. Something borrowed. It was old too. She’d hinted that the something blue was buried beneath her dress, and that Mark would get to see it later. “But, I do have something to tell you.”
Mark was aware of a deafening silence. “Ave Maria” had stopped, and only a small dressing room clock ticked in the background.
“It’s about Frank.”
“Frank?” This hit Mark out of left field. Frank was some older guy Sandra worked with. He wasn’t exactly her supervisor, but he did run the department Sandra wanted to become a part of. “What about him?”
Sandra brought the hanky to her mouth to muffle her cry. “I slept with him!”
“What?”
Someone rapped at the door. “Daughter, are you in there?”
Mark felt like someone had punched him in the gut, extra hard. “When?”
She blinked, dabbing her eyes. “You want a list of dates?”
“There was more than one?” Mark asked, aghast.
Her dad knocked again.
“Just a minute, Daddy!”
“We’ve got a whole church full waiting,” he returned gruffly.
Mark ran a hand through his hair, sorry now he’d cut it. Sorry now he’d done anything Sandra had asked him to do. She’d been cheating on him. Cheating! “He’s out there, isn’t he?” Mark asked.
“His wife came too.”
“Like that makes it so much better.”
“Listen, Mark. I’m telling you this because I want to be fair. I want us to begin our marriage on a clean slate.”
“You’ve got to be kidding me.”
“No! I told Frank. Told him last night. It’s over.”
Mark’s head reeled in disbelief. “You spoke to him after the rehearsal dinner?”
“During. He was there. Remember?”
Sure he was. With his wife! Alarm bells started ringing in Mark’s head. Then his whole world went up in smoke. He could barely see through the fog to meet her expectant eyes.
“There.” She heaved a little breath. “Now that it’s done, I feel much better.” Incredibly, her mouth turned up in a smile. “Baby, don’t be mad.”
Mark wasn’t mad, he was suffocating. It was as if someone had gripped him by the throat and wouldn’t let go. And they were choking the life out of him.
“Open the door,” he told her urgently.
“You’re right,” she said sweetly. “We’re already late.”
Mark peered out into the narthex, where Wayne was waiting. Sandra’s dad and her brothers stood by impatiently too. He spied a sea of blue beyond them and took that to be a gaggle of bridesmaids. But everything was spiraling in a fuzzy blur. Wayne met his gaze, his eyes widening. Somehow he understood that something had gone desperately wrong.
Sandra’s dad took her by the elbow, giving her a sunny smile. “You look lovely.” He led her toward the door to the sanctuary, and the bridesmaids all fell in line. He addressed Mark and Wayne and his sons. “You boys better get around up front.”
They were supposed to enter near the altar, each taking his assigned place. Wayne held open the door, and the groomsmen began filing outside. When Mark slipped past him, Wayne caught him by the sleeve. “What’s going on?”
Mark saw a bright flash of light before him, then a whole nursery of babies. All boys like Sandra’s brothers. And they looked like Frank! He met Wayne’s eyes. “I can’t do this.” He didn’t need to explain what had happened. Wayne had his back.
“Then run, man. Make a break for it. Now.
Mark’s eyes flitted to the front of the church, where the groomsmen were headed. Then back to the sidewalk flanking the road. They were in an older part of town with historic houses, iconic buildings, and small eateries all clumped together. It was Saturday morning just before ten, so the foot traffic was light. If he took off now, he might get three blocks away before anyone noticed.
Mark’s head swam, but there was a fire in his gut. And this fire’s going to consume me if I stand here another second.
Wayne set his jaw and nodded. “Just, do it.”
Mark glanced back in the church and saw Sandra’s and her dad’s eyes on him through the open door. Up ahead, her brothers had stopped and pivoted his way.
Mark sucked in a breath and gathered his nerve before sprinting in the opposite direction. His heels clicked against the sidewalk, dress shoes pinching as he went. But that didn’t slow him down. Mark glanced over his shoulder to see Sandra’s brothers shouting after him, following in hot pursuit as Sandra’s dad bolted from the church. Wayne brought up the rear, hightailing it as fast as he could. Holy cow, Mark thought, racing forward. Then, he swung his arms into action and picked up his pace.

Read Chapter Two
https://www.goodreads.com/author_blog...

Now available!

Kindle
http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00LV4IQOQ

NOOK
http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/the-g...

iBooks
https://itunes.apple.com/us/book/the-...

Kobo
http://store.kobobooks.com/en-US/eboo...
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Published on July 05, 2014 17:49 • 796 views

May 12, 2014

Ginny BairdSome say it’s better to give than receive, but boy, don’t we all love getting things? It’s especially fun when we get them for free. I suppose that’s why we love giveaways. You take a chance and enter, never certain if you’ll win. But if you do? What a fun way to brighten your day! Just knowing you’re the lucky chosen can really lift your spirits, when you find the fates – and maybe a Rafflecopter program – have selected only you!

We’ve had unseasonably warm weather in Virginia, and the heat has gotten me thinking about summertime. SO… in preparation for those long lazy days of cool drinks and beach reading, I’m planning a very special contest. I’m putting together a bountiful bag of goodies for taking to the shore, or carrying almost anywhere one might wish to pleasantly pass the time while basking in the sun. ☺

The prizes I’m including will be revealed one-at-a-time, each day until the Rafflecopter starts on my Facebook page https://www.facebook.com/GinnyBairdRo... on May 18th.

Look for daily updates to be posted here, as well as on Facebook https://www.facebook.com/GinnyBairdRo... and Twitter https://twitter.com/GinnyBaird.

Best wishes and best of luck. May you be the lucky winner!

Please note that all of the following will be included in one “gift bundle” to be awarded to a single grand prize winner. *

GET READY FOR GINNY BAIRD’S BEACH READ GIVEWAY!
See if you can guess the prizes included in this contest.
Answers to be posted here daily until the Rafflecopter begins.

1. This gift set is the perfect fix after a day in the surf and sun. Relax and unwind with the Endless Weekend beauty gift set (shower gel, lotion, spray and scrubbie) from Bath and Body Works. Photo: https://twitter.com/GinnyBaird/status...

2. No beach outing is complete without this important staple. Whether sunning or swimming, you’ll want to take along this beautiful designer Cynthia Rowley beach towel. Photo: https://twitter.com/GinnyBaird/status...

3. When it’s time to lie low and engage in some R&R, you’ll want a great book in your hands to bring a smile to your lips and warm your heart. Enjoy Ginny Baird's Counterfeit Cowboy (autographed copy of new paperback edition) as part of this prize. Photo: http://www.amazon.com/dp/0989589285

4. Frolicking in the waves can be hot work. Preparing something in an insulated "Traveler" Mason Jar will help you cool down. Photo: https://twitter.com/GinnyBaird/status...

5. Keep the sun out of your eyes in this stylish ladies Cowgirl Sun Hat, perfect complement to item #3. Photo: https://twitter.com/GinnyBaird/status...

6. And to keep it all together, you’ll need a super-sized canvas beach tote. Big enough to accommodate all the fun you’re planning in the sun. Photo: https://twitter.com/GinnyBaird/status...

Giveaway goes live on my Facebook Page on Sunday, May 18th at 12:00 noon ET. Good luck to all! http://tinyurl.com/lsuvefp

* Winner will be selected at random, and announced on contest close date June 8th. Limited to entrants in the contiguous United States. Five (5) e-books will also be awarded to contest participants regardless of residency.

Ginny Baird Beach Read Giveaway Winners Announced!

The Rafflecopter guru has spoken and selected the following lucky winners...

GRAND PRIZE PACKAGE
Kim Kernc

COUNTERFEIT COWBOY (ebook)
Leslie Waters
Tina Lynkins

MUST-HAVE HUSBAND (ebook)
Robin Driscoll

MY LUCKY GROOM (ebook)
Lynne Oberdieck Ernst

THE WEDDING WISH (ebook)
Christine Dunkin

Congrats to those receiving a prize and mega thanks to all who entered!
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Published on May 12, 2014 18:51 • 698 views

May 9, 2014

Ginny BairdThe wonderful thing about reading is that there are so many intriguing choices out there. With the advent of e-readers and the proliferation of e-books, there seem to be more options than ever. One thing that excites me about the selection of new romance books coming onto the market is the variety of themes and content they offer. Whether you enjoy contemporary or historical settings, sweet love stories, or red-hot scenes that will scorch your socks off, there’s sure to be a genre (or subgenre) made just for you.

While I love that there is a spectrum that appeals to all sorts of readers, personally, my tastes remain more in the middle. I’m a big romantic comedy buff and also gravitate toward emotionally gripping stories that tug at my heartstrings. If a tale can make me laugh and make me cry, it’s got me. ☺ Pretty much all of the stories I write reflect this by combining a basic love story with a touch of humor or heartfelt hope. Some are sweet, and others are mildly spicy. It all depends upon the tale and where the characters seem determined to go. While none of my books contain what I’d consider scorch-your-socks-off scenes, a few do have open-door love scenes typical to those found in traditional romance novels. These occur when they’re somehow critical to the story, its development and the revelation/bonding of the characters.

In my sweeter books, the romance between the hero and heroine builds in much the same way, often including some sexual tension. But any love scenes (if realized, and there generally aren’t many) take place behind closed doors. My sweeter stories lean in that direction due to the nature of the protagonists and their relationship. When there are single parents involved, such as in many of the stories in my Holiday Brides Series, the hero and heroine have competing concerns as caretakers and role models, so are often more circumspect about becoming physically involved. Though there is always attraction and some level of heat, it’s basically a question of degree.

How about you as a reader? Do you prefer those sweeter tales, or ones that are more steamy? Weigh in with your opinion, and let me hear from you! While many readers tell me all my stories are "sweet" due to the aww... factor, for the purposes of this post, I've divided them into two categories for those who have a particular preference. The Sweet Romance Stories have no “on camera” love scenes, while the Traditional Romance Stories have a few moderate open-door scenes, but typically not more than one or two per book.

Thanks so much for selecting my work, whatever your tastes in romance. I’m honored to have you as a reader of Ginny Baird fiction.

SWEET ROMANCE STORIES
The Christmas Catch (Holiday Brides #1)
The Holiday Bride (Holiday Brides #2)
Mistletoe in Maine (Holiday Brides #3)
Beach Blanket Santa (Holiday Brides #4)
Baby, Be Mine (Holiday Brides #5)
Must-Have Husband (Summer Grooms #1)
My Lucky Groom (Summer Grooms #2)
The Wedding Wish (Summer Grooms #3)
The Ghost Next Door (A Love Story)
Santa Fe Fortune
Special Delivery (A Valentine’s Short Story)
The Right Medicine (Short Story and Novel Sampler)

TRADITIONAL ROMANCE STORIES
The Sometime Bride
Real Romance
How to Marry a Matador
Counterfeit Cowboy
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Published on May 09, 2014 11:50 • 91 views

March 14, 2014

Counterfeit Cowboy by Ginny BairdA few years ago when my husband and I went to Wyoming, we did so with the intention of my setting a book there. The scenery in and around Jackson Hole was breathtaking. The moment I stepped from the plane, I told John I was ready to move! That’s when he started tracking the daily weather reports for Jackson Hole, particularly in winter. So, okay. Maybe my southern blood isn’t quite tough enough for temperatures below zero. But in my mind’s eye I had ways to stay safe and warm.

First of all, I opted to set my story in the summer. That’s when we visited Wyoming, and the season I had the best feel for. But I could definitely envision the place all covered with snow. The landscape was winning enough to inspire visions of romance at any time of year.

While some of my stories come quickly, this one needed time to germinate. I guessed all the adventures my husband and I undertook would come into play, but I wasn’t quite sure how. Then one day I hit upon the notion of an outfit called Wild West Brides. The idea of the “mail order bride” is eons old, but the concept of a cowboy-inspired matchmaking service was brand new. I knew I’d hit upon something. Then I dreamed up Ted Walker. Handsome, confident, sexy… Yeehaw. But was he really a cowboy? Hmm.

The “what-ifs” started building in my brain, including What if Ted Walker is pretending, but then he meets a heroine who’s pretending, too? Pretending to be who she’s not…? The seeds of a delightful story were planted. Plus, I had my heroine pegged. After writing How to Marry a Matador, I had many readers write me and ask for Eve’s story. All at once I knew that Counterfeit Cowboy was the perfect one for her. Eve was the type who always watched from the wings. Whirlwind romances and exciting adventures seemed to occur for everyone but her... until a certain undercover assignment came along.

While Eve is a relatively coordinated heroine, I couldn’t help but subject her to one harrowing escapade on a horse that this writer had been privy to herself. True life does inspire fiction, after all. And, sometimes those scenarios – the ones that are most memorable – set the perfect scene for turning a hero’s head. Ted certainly noticed Eve that day. And, after that, he could scarcely forget her. Check out Counterfeit Cowboy to see how their story ends.

Now at:
Amazon
http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00JCEF4EC

Barnes and Noble
http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/count...

Kobo
http://store.kobobooks.com/en-US/eboo...

Apple iTunes
https://itunes.apple.com/us/book/coun...

Read the first three chapters!
http://www.ginnybairdromance.com/coun...
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Published on March 14, 2014 17:58 • 598 views

February 23, 2014

The Christmas Catch by Ginny BairdWhen an author crafts a story, he or she does so with an eye to words on a page. While we might “hear” dialogue in our mind, very rarely do we think out how our entire novel will sound being read aloud, chapter headings and all – including exposition. Yet, there’s something very soothing about being read to. Think back to when you were younger, and a mom, dad or caring older person read you a book: the kind without pictures. It was magical to sit back and listen, or better yet snuggle down under the covers and get transported to another realm before slipping off into silent slumber. I’d often dream about the book I’d been read, sometimes incorporating myself as the heroine. What a joy it was to have somebody else take the time to introduce me to new worlds through fiction.

Through the resurgence of audiobooks, many adults are now experiencing that same early pleasure of childhood: being read to. Though as busy grown-ups, we’re more apt to be multi-tasking. Commuting to work, exercising, or tackling other jobs as we listen. And what a wonderful use of our time, when those ear buds are in and our hands are free to tackle other objectives. With the advent of smaller devices and downloadable books, we can virtually carry these stories with us anywhere, tuning in for a brief snippet or a chapter as we're able.

I’m glad to see more fiction books moving to audio, and am excited to be converting my Holiday Brides Series to this format as well. Just this week, The Christmas Catch was released in audiobook at Amazon, iTunes and Audible.com. I’m excited about bringing this edition to new readers, and rewarding existing readers (who already love the series) with audio editions of all the “brides” books by Christmas 2014.

When I first heard The Christmas Catch read aloud I was ecstatic. I’d worked hard to audition for, and find, the right narrator. And, in reviewing the finished audiobook, I knew I’d chosen wisely. Susan Soriano is not just a skilled audiobook producer but also a fabulous narrator. She has a sweet yet versatile voice, which perfectly fits the tone of the Holiday Brides Series, and her intonation is crisp, professional and clear.

I’m thrilled to be working with Susan on converting the Holiday Brides Series to audiobooks, and hope you’ll check out Book 1, The Christmas Catch, which is available now. To celebrate this new release, I’m running a “Winter Wedding Rafflecopter” Giveaway on my Facebook Page. There are chances to win copies of The Christmas Catch audiobook, delicious Godiva chocolates and other romantic prizes. I hope you’ll hop on over and enter today!

https://www.facebook.com/GinnyBairdRo...

The Christmas Catch by Ginny Baird
Find The Christmas Catch (Audible Audio Edition) at:


Amazon
http://www.amazon.com/The-Christmas-C...

iTunes
https://itunes.apple.com/us/audiobook...

Audible.com
http://www.audible.com/pd/Romance/The...
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Published on February 23, 2014 11:11 • 230 views

February 9, 2014

Special Delivery (A Valentine's Short Story) by Ginny BairdMy eighteen-year-old son has ambitions of becoming a US Navy pilot. He could be on his way to achieving that goal. He’s just received a full scholarship to the NROTC program at Duke University. Whether or not he’ll pursue this path, still remains to be seen. He’s also been accepted to another excellent school for which we have a pre-paid tuition plan. So he has options.

My son decided to apply for the NROTC scholarship on his own. With so many young people graduating from college these days, yet staying unemployed, he sought security. By going through that program, he’d emerge not just with a degree from a fine university, but also with an officer’s commission and a guaranteed, well-paying job.

He’d originally focused on the Navy Doc program with an eye to becoming a physician. Once he’d researched things further, he decided working in aviation might hold appeal. This made mom’s heart leap, as anxiety settled in my stomach. Being a navy fighter pilot sounded exciting – but dangerous. I worried for my son’s safety and over the kind of life that might bring.

Then I had an opportunity to meet a few fine folks who happened to be navy pilots. My husband teaches in a business school, and US Navy pilots are occasionally in his graduate class. I met two of these gentlemen at this year’s Christmas party and was seriously impressed. Not just with their obvious intelligence and polite demeanors, but also by the supportiveness of their navy wives. Both men were in their early thirties with very young children. Their wives clearly adored them, but confessed it was extremely tough having them away for months at a time. I could only imagine.

A few days later, I began my story of a pregnant wife longing for her military husband's return. As I crafted this tale, I thought of the impressive young couples I’d met at the party, and also of my son – with a hopeful glance at his future. Whatever path my son opts to pursue my heartfelt wish for him is that he’ll find love and happiness. But above all else, my greatest hope is that – no matter the odds, or complications – he’ll always find a way to safely come home.

Find SPECIAL DELIVERY (A VALENTINE’S SHORT STORY) at Amazon:
http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00HKQHRX0
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Published on February 09, 2014 06:32 • 259 views

January 4, 2014

Ginny Baird
Six years ago this month, my husband John and I ran away to the sheriff to get married. And we couldn’t blame our act on youthful indiscretion. We were both over forty. The truth is we were already engaged, but had yet to set a definitive date for our wedding. We’d planned a private ceremony in my town church, including our six children and both mothers, with an intimate lunch at a country inn to follow. The trouble was finding a time when our small brood could congregate. There were test schedules in the way, proms and graduations looming, not to mention spring break arrangements that had been set in advance. What were we two aspiring lovebirds to do? We couldn’t pick a day when all but one of the children could come, but the scheduling seemed impossible. What’s more, anticipating an April wedding, we’d already bought honeymoon tickets to Paris.

In the midst of these anxiety-producing preparations, John surprised me with an early morning phone call. I was at the middle school where I worked as an ESL teacher and it was my planning period, so I had the classroom to myself. His voice was cheery as he approached the subject. “You know, I was thinking… What are you doing tomorrow?” The following day was Friday, a typical date night for us. Sometimes John came for dinner, at other times we ate out. “What did you have in mind?”

There was a short pause on the line before he spouted, “How about we get married?” It took me oh… about twenty seconds to process this. I knew precisely what he was suggesting. That we chuck the whole wad of trying to accommodate everyone, and gosh-darn-it, think about pleasing ourselves! Who needed to wait until April, when the two of us were already so desperate to be together and blend our families?

“All right,” I answered without skipping a beat.

John’s reply was pleased. “All right?”

“Just as long as you can find someone to marry us – so last minute.”

“I’ve got to get off the phone,” he said. “We’re wasting time.”

Thirty minutes later, he called back to say he’d sealed the deal. We had an appointment at the courthouse at four-thirty. He’d come and pick me up after school and drive me there himself. I blushed like a bride at the thought. My knight in shining armor was coming to whisk me away! I could barely teach the next morning, but somehow I muddled through. A few commented on my appearance, as I’d dressed up a bit more than I would on a typical day. But I didn’t let the cat out of the bag. No one at work had a clue. Although I did tell my children. Someone had to pick their little brother up from football practice after all.

The following evening, after a brief but sweet ceremony (which led to one of the sheriff’s lines in “Baby, Be Mine”), John surprised me and the kids with a small bakery wedding cake and bottles of bubbly. We didn’t go to Paris that night, but Paris did come and it we loved every moment. While I never expected to elope in my forties, I can say it was one of the most memorable and uplifting moments of my life. Love really can surprise us at any age. I often write about this reality in my books, including love stories for various characters at all stages of the game, from teens to senior “cougars.” Naturally, I also pen tales of single mothers, finding their way to lasting romance after virtually giving up hope. For nothing is hopeless if a single mom of four, like myself, could have her forever man sweep her away during the bleak winter month of January. And it’s been quite a lovely ride since. One that’s been filled with warmth, companionship, passion and adventure. All that’s been missing is the horse.

Ginny Baird writes sweet romance and romantic comedy. Her latest release SPECIAL DELIVERY: A VALENTINE'S SHORT STORY is now available in eBook.
http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00HKQHRX0
http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/speci...

Books related to this post:

The Christmas Catch (Holiday Brides #1) by Ginny Baird
THE CHRISTMAS CATCH (Holiday Brides Book 1)
Based loosely on Ginny and John's courtship.
http://www.amazon.com/dp/B008VYSGG2
http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/the-c...

Mistletoe in Maine (Holiday Brides #3) by Ginny Baird
MISTLETOE IN MAINE (Holiday Brides Book 3)
Showcasing multigenerational romances.
http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00AB27ZNM
http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/mistl...

Baby, Be Mine (Holiday Brides #5) by Ginny Baird
BABY, BE MINE (Holiday Brides Book 5)
Sheriff's advice to Jack and Nikki mirrors sheriff's words to John and Ginny.
http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00G4KOYHK
http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/baby-...
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Published on January 04, 2014 08:43 • 694 views

The Story Behind the Story...

Ginny Baird
What inspires Ginny Baird romance? Everything from the extraordinary to the mundane. Keep reading for "The Story Behind the Story" of current novels, and a behind the scenes peek at works in progress.
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