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Christmas makes everyone crazy. Some of us just had a head start.

Is everyone ready for the big day? christmas tree

Have you managed to stuff all those stockings? Did you do it without spending $7M?

How about wrapping? Did you find dedicated Santa wrapping paper and manage to hide it in your Durango for a week even though your kids are snoopy, sneaky short people and seemed determined to foil all your best plots?

Did you do like me and go shopping with your son for something for his father, nice and early to avoid the rush, then hide it nice a safe place only to forget where the hell that is, and now you have to face the thundering horde at the mall for something else?

Have you wrapped a package in beautiful paper with a lovely handmade bow and everything, then when it was time to put the tag on it you can’t for the life of you remember what the hell it was that you wrapped or who it was for, forcing you to open the paper and start all over again?

Who else has started drinking?


December 20

5-things12We cannot believe that it’s less than a week until Christmas. We’re certain you’re all in the same boat. It just doesn’t seem possible, does it? This is our kids’ last day of school until they go back for the new year in January. There are two ways to look at this development. On one hand, those people are loud and constantly bicker regardless of how many times you remind them that Santa can see all their nonsense. On the other hand, there is one thing that will offset this. We won’t have to set an alarm clock for two weeks! Wahooooo! That’s the one unemployment benefit we haven’t been able to participate in – sleeping in and wearing pajamas all day. Amylynn’s kids are unreasonable with this, airplane brawlalways wanting us to wear actual clothes to take them to school. **eyeroll** Here’s some funny stuff that happened this week.

1. Flying in China. We don’t know what’s going on over in China, but all of a sudden they’re showing up in our news feeds with all kinds of misbehaving while on airplanes. This isn’t even counting that crazy woman in Korea who was so awful. How about the three women who got in a brawl over one of the woman’s baby crying. Apparently, it screamed the entire flight. The passengers actually came to blows over this – the photos show them crawling over seat backs. It probably was more entertaining than the inflight movie anyway. The best part is that the captain threatened to “turn the plane around if things didn’t settle down back there.” Another man – on his very first flight EVER – got tired of waiting for the plane to take off so he opened the The Interviewemergency exit door to get some fresh air into the cabin. There is some discrepancy if this caused the emergency slide to activate. Regardless, the cabin stewards lost their minds. All we can say is we’ve been on planes that sat on the tarmac for what felt like FOREVER and it would have been nice to have some fresh air. We feel for you, dude.

2. So many other options. You’ve probably heard by now that Sony is not going to release their movie staring Seth Rogan and James Franco called The Interview. There have been some unfounded threats by terrorists, and several theater companies refused to exhibit the picture. We’re not going to get into the whole “the terrorists have won” argument or any of that. If you want that, there are plenty of diatribes on the internet all about it. Go nuts if you feel so inclined. This isn’t one of those blogs. Instead, we want to offer up some other suggestions of movies that should also be pulled for a myriad of reasons. Anything by Adam

Artistic license taken with the dog in question

Artistic license taken with the dog in question

Sandler, for example. If there should be some insanity and The Expendables 4 is made. Also, as much as we adore Jared Leto, we have to admit that he frequently makes awful movie choices. (Ava whole heartedly disagrees with this. Jared is perfect in all ways.)

3. The dogs are trouble. Do you remember last week how that dog set his master’s house on fire? This week one of those loveable pooches shot his master in the arm with a rifle. Everyone is quick to point out how it was an accident and the man is not suffering life threatening injuries, but we think it would be prudent to keep an eye on the dogs for socksthe time being. Cats seem to get all the attention for being sneaky, but all the evidence points to our canine “friends”. We’re just saying, perhaps we buy the expensive food for a while and maybe a bone or two for Christmas until things settle down.

4. Everyday nice socks. This is a goal for all of us. Wear “everyday nice socks”. Our friend Pumpkin brought both the Sisters some “everyday nice socks” from South Korea. These particular “everyday nice socks” have Santa and Rudolph on them. Odd from Korea, you say? Pumpkin says they’re crazy about everything Christmas – they put up trees and everything. This makes us wonder what their “everyday nice socks” look like the other twelve months of the year.

5. Another mom who’s had enough. This is the best thing that’s happened on C-Span since, well, since forever. Brothers Danny (Republican) and Brad (Democrat) Woodhouse appeared on the news show. As you can imagine they were arguing since they have opposite political views and that’s what C-Span is all about. Apparently, their mother has had enough so she called in to the live show and told them to pipe down. Once they realize it’s their mom, one of them buries his face in his hands and groans, “Oh god, it’s Mom.” Our favorite part is when Mom said, “I’m hoping you’ll have some of this out of your system when you come here for Christmas. I would really like a peaceful Christmas.” Based on our experience, that won’t be likely. We’ve included the video below.

New and improved

So Ava and I decided that the cover for The Duke of Morewether’s Secret didn’t fit with the rest of the series.

We had it remade. It will go live on Amazon sometime probably after the holidays.

Duke600x900What do you think?


We missed National Cat Herders day and I’m all broken up about it

I have this app on my iPhone that tells you what each day of the year celebrates. You know like Mother’s Day or Arbor Day, only the days this app reminds you of are things no one has ever heard of before.

Here’s what it says for December 18th:

1. Answer the phone like Buddy the Elf day.Buddy the Elf

OK – that might be fun, except the only people who call me during the day is my father and he’d be totally clueless and all the fun would get sucked out of it. I think I’ll pass.

2. Bake Cookies Day

This one I like for obvious reasons.

3. Free Shipping Day.

Perfect. I’d like to be shipped to New Zealand please.

4. International Migrants Day.

Sigh. There’s no joke here.

5. National Regifting Day.

Interesting that they’d put this one 1 week before Christmas. I think this day was designated for really lazy people. I also suspect that the National Retail Federation does NOT endorse this.

6. National Roast Suckling Pig Day

Don’t you think this one is oddly specific? Why not just roast pig day? Or roast day? No, this is suckling pig day. That’s a pig with an apple in it’s

Now it all makes sense

Now it all makes sense

mouth, right? That kinda creeps me out and the only time I can see myself eating one of these is if I’m transported back to Medieval Europe in a time machine or something.

7. National Wear a Plunger on Your Head Day.

What? I suspect drugs were involved when this one was thought up. Not only is it unsanitary, it’s also stupid. Promise me that if you see someone with a plunger on their head you will ignore them. They are only desperate for attention and you don’t want to give it to people like that. Then the next thing you know, everyone on MTV is wearing a damn plunger everywhere and then we’ll have young men with their pants hanging WAY too low and plungers on their heads. I can see this getting rapidly out of control. Just say no to plungers. No. No. No.

The boy eats enough to almost warrant it

We got a new refrigerator. The Bandit is campaigning heavily for the old refrigerator to go into his room. I don’t think he’s really thought this through since I have no idea where he would put it.

“What furniture should we move out of there?” I asked, thinking to humor him for a moment. I always enjoy his thought processes.

He thought for a second. “Well, I need my desk because I wouldn’t have anywhere to put my computer to play Minecraft.”


“And I like my bed.”

“It seems appropriate that a bedroom should have a bed.”fridge

“I don’t really need my dresser,” he suggested.

He’s totally right. All of his clothes, clean or dirty, are scattered on his floor. No amount of nagging seems to change this. Ava’s head would explode if she saw his room.

“Still–” I shook my head “–I don’t think we’ll be putting that old fridge in your room. You’ve already got enough food hidden in there.”

“Oh, come on!” he protested. “Sassy gets a laptop.”

Like a laptop and a refrigerator cancel each other out.

“I never get anything good.” He narrowed his eyes. He does this like he’s Old Ben Kenobi and he can convince me that these are not the droids we’re looking for or something.

“You’re right. You don’t.” I shrugged. “And it’s too late to tell Santa about it now.”

He snorted in disgust and went to say goodbye to the old fridge.

“Mark this down in that notebook I gave you to mention to your therapist some day: Reason 753 why I had the worst mother EVER.”

If your human and you know it, eat a snack

Sincerely – this commercial is our life. We almost feel like they wrote it for us. Amylynn’s favorite part is the woman eating the corn dog while working out on the elliptical machine.

My book birthday!

We don’t do a lot of self-promotion here at the Quill Sisters. Today I’m going to make an exception.

Finish What We Started is out! Ready for you to purchase!

This is Lee’s story. You’ll remember Lee as the brother of the hero from Cooking Up Love. And the lady of Lee’s dreams is going to run him through the wringer before they find their happily ever after.

9781426899331-COVFive years ago, Lee Bennett’s whirlwind romance with Candace Claesson ended as abruptly as it had begun, and just when he needed her the most. Since then, Lee’s built a successful construction company and a satisfying, if solitary, life. When he’s hired to build Candace’s new veterinary clinic, Lee finds her as irresistible as ever—but he’s never forgiven her and he’s sure as hell not letting her break his heart again.

For years, Candace has wrestled with regret and guilt over leaving Lee. At the time, nothing was going to stop her from achieving her dreams of studying in Scotland and becoming a vet—not even young love. They’d been inseparable for six months, but anything that intense couldn’t last. Or so she thought.

Reunited in their hometown, neither Lee nor Candace can resist picking up where they left off. But with so much from the past standing between them, how they can rebuild what they started so long ago?



Amazon   Barnes & Noble  Kobo  Carina Press


December 12

5-things12We’re still feeling out this business of the Sisters being separated. It’s not like we haven’t ever been apart before, but for the last ten years, we’ve been together more than nine hours a day, five days a week. And then we’d talk at night and all weekend. Now, Ava’s trying to figure out if she can actually work in an office again, and Amylynn has been trying to navigate the world without a wingman. It’s been rocky. First of all, no one thinks we’re funny, and that’s a tragedy. Second, we have to eat BY OURSELVES or with strangers. The only thing that perks Amylynn up is that her Chipolte consumption is way down. Also, it’s really good that our garter snakecellphone company doesn’t charge us by the text or we’d be selling a kidney to pay for that. We’ve wiped away a tear and found some funny stuff to share. At least there’s that.

1. Snake House. Somewhere in Saskatchewan, Canada 310 garter snakes were removed from a family’s home. They were everywhere–the kitchen, basement, and even the upstairs rooms. Now get this, the family had rounded up 221 snakes on their own before they called snake experts. The Sisters live in snake country and you’d think that would make us used to it, but we want to assure you that if one snake slithers through our kitchen there is going to be trouble. If another one wanders into our bedroom, shit is going to fly. The experts had better furriesshow up with guns a blazin’. Our favorite part of this story is that the family has asked to remain anonymous so that people could visit without fear. Our recommendation is that if ANYONE in Saskatchewan invites you to visit, you stay the hell away. Better safe than sorry.

2. Flurry of furries. This is one of those stories that you’re going to think we made up.  We swear we didn’t. Seriously. Ok, here we go. A hotel in Chicago that was hosting a Furries convention–hold on, do you know what a furry is? They are adult people who enjoy dressing up in cartoonish animal costumes. You’ve seen them. Amylynn was traumatized by an episode of CSI that centered around furries.  Anyway, this Chicago hotel was hosting the Furfest annual convention when emergency mountain-lionworkers evacuated the hotel due to a toxic chlorine gas issue. “Where did they evacuate the furries to?” you ask. To the dog show next door. Because of course they did. Can you imagine the look on the Pekinese owner’s faces when the 6-foot-tall rabbits, foxes and dragons poured into the arena?  Good times!

3. Lion on the run. We talked about this before. The forest service down here keeps trying to reintroduce big horn sheep to our area. The mountain lions keep gobbling them up. First let us state that we disapprove of eating the sheep. The sheep are probably very nice, but lets face it–they don’t seem very cuddly. The Sisters will always side for the cuddlier animal. Or maybe it’s the fuzzier animal. There’s probably a chart we could put together for reference.  We Malalasuspect this affinity is our fatal flaw. Most likely it will get us killed one day. Nevertheless, we’re rooting for the latest mountain lion to escape with his full belly.

4. Our favorite Nobel Laureate. Nothing funny here. We’d like to say we’d be brave enough to do what Malala Yousafzai did, but we fear that we’re closet cowards. She also makes us feel ungrateful, but we strive to live a life that is worthy of the Malala Yousafzai’s out there who don’t have our conveniences. We’ve had conversations with our daughters about what Malala means to all women, but we doubt they’ve really grasped her importance. We’ll keep at

The burnt dog bed

The burnt dog bed

it. She’s a wonder. At the risk of sounding stupid, we’ll raise a cupcake in your honor today, Malala. We recommend you do the same, Internet.

5. Dog trouble. Coming full circle, we head back to Canada for our final thing. In the Yukon some crazy dog set his owner’s house on fire when he was playing with matches. Yes, the dog was playing with matches. There is a serious lapse in details in the article we read as we don’t know what kind of dog this was. One of those juvenile delinquent breeds, most likely. Apparently, said dog was lounging on his bed and chewing on a box of “strike anywhere” matches. No animals or people were harmed in the fire, but it did cause extensive smoke damage to the house. We’re wondering if there wasn’t more to this story. Like maybe did he see a snake? If there was a snake then burning down the house may have been the only solution, something those people in Saskatchewan should look into.

They even had an old fashioned card catalog!

The book that I’m writing is making me crazy. It’s by far the hardest one to research yet–and I thought the one where the cast went to Greece had been difficult. Believe me, it’s nothing compared to this one.

And the craziest part is, the bulk of this “Regency” takes place in America. Early America. 1815 America to be exact. You’d think that would be a lot easier to research what with me being an American and all, but this has been a nightmare. Everyone thinks they know the answer and I’ve been given lots of advice, all of which I know is unequivocally wrong based on what I’ve learned so far. Everyone is an expert who doesn’t know shit.

I don’t want to divulge the actual issue I’m dealing with–I’ll have it all worked out eventually (bah!!!!) and you can read it when it comes out–but it has to do with traveling. I’ve been all over the internet. I’ve read old books, read personal accounts, looked at maps on line till my eyes crossed. I’ve contacted the Missouri State Historical Society, who sent me to, of all places, The Arizona State Historical Society–more on that later. I’ve

can you even remember the last time you used one of these?

can you even remember the last time you used one of these?

requested historical articles from the 1816 Missouri Gazette. Yet, I’m still floundering over a specific issue. I wish I could just change my plot and get rid of this nightmare, but that’s not going to work out either.

I started out today with a great deal of hope. I headed down to the AZ Historical Society library. I’ve never been in a historical reading room before. Not that I don’t have hopes of making it to the Vatican and poking around in their library some day. At least now I’ll be prepared. Did you know you can’t take anything in the room with you? ANYTHING. The librarian made me sign a huge form that promised a long and protracted death should I maim the books in any way such as marking in them, folding or tearing a page, or exhaling garlic breath on the bindings.  Then she gave me a quarter and told me to put EVERYTHING in a locker outside. No, I may not keep a notebook. No, not a pen either. I shoved my purse into the locker, but squirreled my cell phone in my jeans pocket, because really. After a stern look from the librarian, she gave me the book I needed.

It was in fabulous shape considering it was written in 1818. I suspect that’s because no one is

I don't know what library they're at but this would not have been allowed where I was

I don’t know what library they’re at but this would not have been allowed where I was

allowed to look at the books too sternly.

Don’t you know the minute I settled in with my official AZ Historical Society pencil and piece of blue paper parceled out for notes, my nose started running. I didn’t have any Kleenix since I didn’t have my purse. There was none in the library either. What the hell would they do to me if I got snot on their book? Holy shit. I was terrified. I sniffed and sniffed and sniffed until I started sounding like a cocaine addict.

At one point, I noticed someone–someone who was NOT me–had made “x’s” in the margin on pages 164 and 165. Do I narc them out? Do I erase them? What if the librarian noticed me erasing and assumed I wrote the “x’s” in the first place. She’d never believe the girl with the obvious cocaine addiction if I told them it wasn’t me. I quickly turned the page just in case. I have no idea what was on those pages. I’ll bet the exact information I needed was right there.  I’ll never know.

I left the library still frustrated, but not remanded to the library prison so I consider that a win. Still, I’m not accepting any calls that come from that number.

I don’t see this working out

Dear Life of Leisure,

I miss you. I really do. I don’t know what I was thinking to get a job and let you go but I’m sorry. Please, please come back to me. Baby, come back. Here’s what I did today without you and Amy: I went to work where they made me WORK. I swear it’s true. I had to work like a . . . I don’t know what you call it . . . like a WORKER.

It’s odd. I have not had to be to any job on time in decades. By on time, I mean at a certain time, in this case 8:30AM. They expect you to be in the office by 8:30AM. Not around 8:30AM but AT 8:29AM or earlier. It’s just crazy. In fact, I really need to talk to them about such an unreasonable demand.

I Miss You

I Miss You

I’ve also been able to come and go as I pleased. And let me tell you, it pleased me and Amy no end to come and go as we pleased. I’m not saying (with the exception of recently) that I’m not used to doing my job at work I’m just saying I’m not used to being treated like a worker.

I feel like a captive. After you get there, you can’t leave until lunch. And lunch is a disaster! Lunch is only for an hour. ONE HOUR. Who the hell can get lunch, eat it, run errands, etc. in 60 measly minutes. Honest to Zeus, it’s barbaric. And no one is grateful that you show back up after your tiny lunch hour. Nooooooooooooo. Now get this, they EXPECT you to return after lunch and stay until closing time. It’s expected. Apparently, everyone does it.

I’m not even going to tell you what happened when I asked where the nail polish and TV were located . . . let’s just say – I don’t see this working out.





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