Wednesday, August 24, 2022

Anniversary and Friends


Why it’s Important to have Friends

August 24, 2021, a group of friends and I met via email. We are all published authors and live in different areas making it difficult to meet in person. At one time, we all belonged to a now defunct writers’ group and were looking for a way to stay in touch, not only to discuss our works in progress, or to bounce story ideas off each other, but to be supportive when life gets in the way. After much discussion, we decided to form a private FB group; and because we are all writers we agreed to call ourselves “Pen Dames,” and to also create the Pen Dames Blog to share our knowledge of writing and other thoughts with the public.

Today, August 24, 2022, we celebrate our one year anniversary, not only as Pen Dames, but, more importantly, as long-time friends. I’ve pondered the question: Why is it important to have (good) friends? I hope you’ll indulge me while I share my thoughts with you:

1. Friends do a lot more than give you a shoulder to cry on; they also have a positive impact on your health. Friendship decreases feelings of loneliness and isolation.

2. Friends help us set and maintain goals whether those goals are finishing a novel, starting a new novel, or beginning a diet and exercise program, or simply suggesting books to read.

3. Friends give us emotional support when we’re going through tough times. It’s always nice to have a shoulder to lean on.

4. We all have self-doubts and insecurities every now and then. Supportive friends can help you feel more confident by offering praise and reassurance. They'll shine a light on just how amazing you are and how much you have to offer others.

5. Spending time with friends can help reduce stress without being judgmental. As the song goes, “we all need a friend to lean on.”

6. Friends help us grieve when we lose that special someone whether it’s a spouse, a family member, or a beloved pet.

I’m thankful for my Pen Dame friends. If you’ve visited our blog, then you’ve met us, but if this is your first visit, then I’d like to introduce you to these wonderful ladies:

Flossie Benton Rogers

Katherine (Kathy) Eddinger Smits

Jennifer Taylor

Linda Tillis

You can click on each of their names on the right side of this blog to read more about them and the genres they write.

As we move through life, we find that there are many things out of our control. We can’t choose our parents, our genetics, or control the things that happen in the world around us. One thing that we can control is who our friends are, and when we choose good friends this decision can make our lives so much richer and beautiful.

By the way, please join me in wishing Pen Dame, Linda Tillis, a very special Happy Birthday.

                                               HAPPY 1st ANNIVERSARY

                                                           PEN DAMES!

                                               I look forward to many more years of friendship.

                                                        Loretta C. Rogers






Monday, August 8, 2022

How to Indulge in a Little "Me" Time


Are you lost in the shuffle of day to day living? At times that’s how it seems to me. Tasks such as grocery shopping, cleaning house and preparing meals often take precedence over “me” time.

I looked up the word self-indulgence and here’s what I found, “Eating whatever you feel like, even if it’s ice cream for breakfast; you just do what you feel like doing.”

One great way to indulge yourself is to kick back in your favorite chair with your favorite beverage or snack and with an intriguing mystery novel. Please enjoy the blurb and excerpt from book #3 in my Doc Holliday Mystery Series…




When a stuntman is shot while rehearsing a scene from cowboy hero Cody West’s newest movie, everyone considers his death an unfortunate accident. Veterinarian and amateur sleuth, Tullah Holliday, doesn’t hesitate to get involved. Her empathic senses tell her he was murdered. She suspects Cody West is the killer. As Tullah begins to put together the pieces of the case, West is stomped to death by a young stallion being trained as a stunt horse. Her life is endangered when she attempts to stop the horse trainer from shooting the stallion.

When two women confess to murdering the movie star, and also point the finger at a third accomplice, Tullah soon discovers the entire movie crew seems to have had a motive to kill him. Who killed Cody West—the horse or…



I squatted over the body. The man’s arms were held against his chest. Clutched in his left hand was the neck of a broken bourbon bottle. His eyes looked into mine, but they were motionless. There was no need to check for a pulse. I touched my chin to my chest and whispered his name. Only the corral’s sullen silence and the patter of rain on my head and shoulders answered me.

“Damn. It’s…” Boyd stood over me and gagged. Once he caught his breath, he commanded, “Give me my rifle. That horse needs killin’.”

“Ella,” I yelled above the storm. “Call my dad. It’s Cody West, and he’s dead.” I also instructed her to back the horse trailer all the way down to the barn’s open outer doors.

My heart pitched with anger. “Mr. Boyd, I’m taking custody of both horses until the cause of Cody’s death is determined.”

His hands shot out. He grabbed me by both wrists and yanked me up. “Determined? The hell you say. It’s obvious that killer stomped Cody to death.”

So who killed Cody West? You’ll find the answer in Lights…Camera…Murder! Available in print and Ebook.

I also appreciate when readers leave a review. So, thank you in advance. I look forward to you telling me (in the comments below) if you guessed who killed Cody West (no spoilers, please) or did you have to read all the way to the end of the book to find out?


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Monday, July 11, 2022

Christmas in July with the Pen Dames



The Pen Dames authors invite readers to celebrate Christmas in July with special stories featuring captivating heroines and sexy heroes.

Katherine Eddinger Smits Books

Loretta C. Rogers Books

Jennifer Taylor Books

Linda Tillis Books

Flossie Benton Rogers Books




Monday, June 6, 2022

Fun and Games!

I love all kinds of word games from crossword puzzles, to seek and find, the daily Jumble in the paper, and, of course, Wordle. Drinking my coffee and playing games in the morning is one of my favorite ways to relax. 

Since I love these games so much, I decided to create one for you. All the words relate to the Pen Dames. All you have to do is rearrange the letters. Give yourself a point for each word you figure out. Some are easy. Some are long and hard. When you finish, scroll to the bottom and find your unscrambler level.

The Pen Dames Word Scramble

1.      raushot

2.      vneol

3.      rtahe

4.      mhuor

5.      unssepes

6.      erstmyy

7.      vloe

8.      nsaaruurelpt

9.      wsrntee

10.  arnamlopra

11.  spnaois

12.  nadger

13.  gnereve

14.  leyraatb

15.  hspoe

16.  emsrad

1.      aroencm

2.      eiarmdm

3.      fansyat

4.      ilhcoiarst

Unscrambler Level:

0 – 5 Correct: Word Seeker

You are new to the game and probably a little frustrated. But don’t give up! The more you practice, the better you will do.


5 – 10 Correct: Word Skilled

You are smart and enjoy word challenges! Keep working and you’ll move up the levels.


11 – 15 Correct: Word Sage

You’re an awesome word player. You probably can read upside down and backwards too!


16 – 20 Correct: Word Siren

You are a master at anything to do with words. You effortlessly call the words you need to you and make them do your bidding!

I hope you enjoyed the game. I'd love to hear how you did! If you like contests, freebies, and fun, come on over to my website and sign up for my newsletter which I send out once or twice a month. Every month I have contests with cool prizes. If you like challenging word puzzles, you will love my June newsletter (coming out at the end of the month)! I bet no one will figure it out. And, if you like free books, you'll love my June Special Edition which comes out June 15. Sign up now: Katherine Smits Newsletter

You'll also receive a free short story just for subscribing. 

Unsubscribe any time. No hard feelings!

Katherine Smits’ stories of fantasy and romance include mages, mermaids, and magical creatures. Mystery, suspense, and a little sex add spice to her books.

Friday, April 1, 2022

April Fool's Day--NOT!


It’s happened to most of us. We try to pull an April fool’s joke, and it backfires or someone pulls a joke on you and it’s more hurtful than funny. Well, today isn’t about fooling our readers. Actually, I have some exciting book-related news. On April 21st, book #2 of my Doc Holliday Mystery series releases. 

Don’t you just love the cover?

Enjoy a sneak preview of “The Boneyard.”

“This place gives me the creeps,” grandmother’s voice sounded strained. “Tullah, you’re white as a sheet.”

Dad adjusted the .45 on his hip as if expecting trouble. I felt as if someone was walking on my grave without me being in it. Part of me wanted to turn around, get on my horse and race away from this place. The other part was held by a voice inside my head saying I’m here. We’re all here. Find us. Please find us.

I could feel that the voice was in a place—a deep dark place. I felt it in me, and it clawed its way up my spine. I knew it would come out my mouth like a regurgitation of emotion if I let it.

I inhaled. I would never get used to these surprised visits of the mind that iced my blood and burdened my heart. I never had them when my mother was alive. Had she somehow in death gifted me with this curse?

I stood there, listening to the hum of mosquitoes and my dog’s whines, and staring into the dark marsh until I became aware of the welling of tears in my eyes. I gripped his arms. “Dad, this is a place of death.”

The Boneyard available in print and Ebook at Amazon. com

WAIT…Don’t Go!

If you are a book lover, you don’t want to miss novels by our wonderful Pen Dames. There’s a genre for every reader.

Do you need to escape from reality? Then Flossie Benton Rogers’ fantasy novels are the perfect gateway to magic and romance. For a list of her books visit Flossie at:

Love mermaids and mermen? Then be swept away by Katherine Eddinger Smits enchanting tales of adventure and mystery. Visit Katherine at:

If you are inspired by women who fought the good fight, then Linda Tillis’ historical western romance are just the books for you. Visit Linda at:

Jennifer Taylor’s historical romance novels immerse readers into the lives of our foremothers, and help us appreciate how far we have come. Visit Jennifer at:

And this, dear readers, is no joke. Happy April fool’s Day!


Tuesday, March 8, 2022

Love and Betrayal on the Ides of March


Cleopatra Trailer Screenshot, Public Domain, Wikimedia

Vincenzo Camuccini, Death of Caesar, Public Domain, Wikimedia

History marks March 15th as a date to “beware.” From our perspective, the day’s negative rap began in 44 BCE, when Brutus, Cassius, and other Roman senators assassinated their Roman emperor and supposed friend, Julius Caesar. I can see the scene in my mind’s eye, not only because of Shakespeare’s play and the movies, but also from learning about the event as a child in elementary school. However, the Ides of March didn’t start with the assassination. On the old Roman calendar the Ides fell on the first full moon of the New Year, which began in March. Romans viewed it as the deadline for settling debts. Isn’t it interesting that the assassins chose that particular day for their deed of betrayal?

As a theme of the human condition, betrayal plays a part in several Pen Dames novels, along with other motifs such as love, passion, danger, revenge, inner strength, and heart stopping adventure. Some of our books touch upon all of these. To heat up your Ides of March, check out these exciting reads! They are some of my favorites by Pen Dames authors.

In Loretta C. Rogers’ When Comes Forever, both hero and heroine are betrayed by their families. Their heartbreaking travails and growing attraction draw them together to fight their way through the treachery and intrigue.

In Linda Tillis’ A Heart for All Time, the heroine meets the hero at a hair-raising moment--as he is in the process of being hanged. You’d think things could only look up from there, but many other perils threaten these two valiant souls.

In Katherine Eddinger Smits’ Water Desires (Love’s Siren Song II), the odds are against the heroine. She has to seek the strength to deal with a dying father, a resentful mother, and a secretive mentor, while trying to recover from illness and salvage a seemingly doomed future with her true love.

In Jennifer Taylor’s Mercy of the Moon (Rhythm of the Moon series), a sinister killer is on the loose. Danger lurks in the dark for the heroine and hero, both from the outside and from within.

In Flossie Benton Rogers’ Runes (Wytchfae 1), both heroine and hero suffer betrayal and must stand together to come out ahead. Fittingly for the Ides of March, Julius Caesar’s assassin, Cassius, makes an appearance in the story. He is one of the loathsome Grims, a dissipated ghoul following the orders of a vampiric Underworld queen.

If you have already enjoyed these or other Pen Dames books, please consider leaving a short review on Amazon, Goodreads, BookBub, or elsewhere. You’ll be sure to win a Pen Dame’s heart!

Thanks for reading!

Flossie Benton Rogers for the Pen Dames

Heart, Humor, and Happily Ever After

Anniversary and Friends

  Why it’s Important to have Friends August 24, 2021, a group of friends and I met via email. We are all published authors and live in dif...