Tag Archives: wine

Hello NaNonites by LV Gaudet

Hello NaNonites.


I met a few of you at the kick off.

I’m Lori.  I write dark fiction and Halloween is my favorite flavor of holiday decoration.  I don’t get online every day, busy life and all.

You can find me on NaNoWriMo under my published name: LV Gaudet



Are you ready for thirty days of obsessive writing?  One of the tools I like to use is mocking up a book cover for inspiration.  A visual of the literary feel of the story.


For those who don’t know what it is, NaNoWriMo stands for National Novel Writing Month.  For the month of November you pledge to write 50,000 words in 30 days.  Yeah, we’re nuts.  We are writers.  There is a wine that goes nicely with that.


I had to look back on my Nano books to figure out this is my 8th year.  Oops, I was a year off tonight.  I won three of those years.

Here are my NaNo creations in chronological order:

Garden Grove Cover - Amazon ebook - front cover


Garden Grove – Self published.


NaNoWriMo 2011 Cover


Untitled – I will come back to it.


Pageflex Persona [document: PRS0000035_00023]


The McAllister Farm (winner!) – Published by Indigo Sea Press, a small indie press in the US.

Blood cover


Blood (winner!) –  Based on the short story.  I will finish it, but it’s getting weird.



Butterflies in the Garden (winner!) – Needs a do over and I vote this worst ever mock cover.  This will eventually be published under my alter ego to frighten the middle years/teens.


Old Mill Road cover idea


Old Mill Road – Still a work in progress. On the back burner.  I’m still looking for the old Mill Road monster.

Nathan copy-NaNoNathan – Yeah, and then there is Nathan.  Nathan was born in Hunting Michael Underwood.  But, he wouldn’t stay there.  I only made 9000+ words and gave up.  But, the voices in Nathan’s head are still there.  They will get out.  Run.

Killing David McAllister

And this year’s Nano is Killing David McAllister.  Fourth book in the McAllister Series and it will be the final.  Hunting Michael Underwood was supposed to be the last, but the story was not done.  Well, except for the spin off.  White Van.  That was not a NaNo book.  I will get back to it.


If you find me on Twitter (@lvgaudet), you will probably see random posts about the #BigDumbBunny.  The name is self-explanatory.  She’s big.  She’s dumb.  And she looks like a big dumb bunny with those ears and the bunny hop.


Feel free to check out one of my blogs.

The Intangible World of the Literary Mind (lvgwriting.wordpress.com) is my first blog.  It’s a blog about writing and being a writer for writers.  I haven’t been as active as I would like to be.  Life and stuff.  Writing.  You get it.  I’ve posted stories, tips on writing, editing, creating platform, and promoting yourself and your writing.  I post my own tips as well as hitting the reblog button to share the advice of others.  I share (reblog) the odd book review and write my own book reviews when I have time to finish and review a book.  I have a lot of reviews I am behind on writing.  I post some random stuff too.

LV Gaudet, author (lvgaudet.wordpress.com) is a fan blog.  It’s all about the reader.  I share weird and creepy news stuff.  Sometimes podcasts by some other people who like dark stories.  And I post my own stories here.  I am working on being more sharing.

Vivian Munnoch, author (vivianmunnoch.wordpress.com) is a nom de plume.  An alias.  My sometimes alter ego.  I use this name for the child friendly stories.  This is where I would post anything to do with the younger realm of darkness.




Filed under L.V. Gaudet, writing

Don’t Kill the Messenger

TruthNow don’t get angry with me just because I’m about to tell you the truth. I know, I know, the truth hurts, but sometimes we have to face it. Now I am just going to be honest with you, and if the truth hurts, remember I’m just the messenger.

White houseJeffersonThis truth business all came about because a friend, well OK, an acquaintance really, had just returned from D.C. and was rhapsodize about all the monuments and I thought, “Yeah, that’s a city of nothing but liars and monuments and all the monuments are to liars.”


UnknownI realize that may not be a very nice thing to say, so I’ll mitigate it somewhat by saying there may be a monument to someone other than a liar like the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier and some of those little monuments in Arlington.

Aside from that slight possibility; in all likelihood the greater the liar, the larger the monument, because almost every monument is to a “gone from here” politician and everyone knows there is not a more accomplished liar than a politician. Continue reading


Filed under fiction, Humor, writing

Lightning Strikes/Happy Accidents by Ginger King

Sometimes lightning strikes. When it does we all take notice. Sometimes it’s just the sound and sometimes it’s the entire package. Lights, crash and boom! Recently I had a happy strike. It causes us to pause and take account of everything around us.

We call these happy accidents usually. Do you believe these are accidents, or fate, destiny? Today I am not so much focused on the source as I am the blessing. Talking to people about their “happy accidents” always gives me goosebumps. These are some of the jewels of life.

A vintner recently described his latest lightning strike to me. His new barrels had come in, and upon opening them, he found that two of them had obviously been used for transporting or curing fresh red peppers. Being an optimist, he proceeded to use the barrels thinking, ” What am I doing, there’s a mistake about to come out of his experiment. ”

A good lightning strike happened instead. The wine that was produced is currently his number one seller. It is a jammy full red with lots of punch from both the fruit and the peppers, whose only presence in the process was the essence it left in the vessel. A small part one could argue, but one that imparted that definitive quality (the lightning strike). If you like pepper jelly, you would love this wine.

Note to self…never forget to be a little spicy. You never know what happy lightning strike may be headed your way because of it.


Ginger King is the author of Carolina Wine Country Cooking, published by Second Wind Publishing.

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Filed under life, musings

Peaches Peppers & Pork Chops

CWC Card - Needs editing 037I get asked a lot what made me want to write Carolina Wine Country Cooking.  Well, to be honest, I didn’t know I was writing it at first… it was just an enhanced format for my North Carolina wine journal that was more about cooking with wine and pairing food with wine, than it was about individul wine characteristics.

The first recipe I wrote down to keep is below.  It was too darn good not to repeat!  The wine I used was of course from North Carolina, and it was a muscadine.  You could however use, ice wines in this for the best pair with the peppers, but you most certainly could try any wine you like.  I would stay away from the power house reds like sangiovese or sauvignon as they would tend to overpower the sweetness of the peaches. 

Peaches, Peppers & Pork Chops

6-8 Boneless pork chops

2 cups fresh or frozen peaches, sliced

1/2 cup chopped Vidalia onion

1 whole, seeded jalapeno pepper finely diced

1 Tablespoon Olive Oil

1/2 cup semi sweet white wine – (Old North State – 38 Vines Autumn Leaf Gold)

1 Teaspoon Salt

1 Teaspoon fresh ground black pepper

If using frozen peaches, place them into a non-stick skillet on med-high heat – watching carefully. Once thawed, and starting to caramelize, add olive oil. Add onions and jalapeno pepper, caramelizing further, until all are softened and golden. (If starting with fresh peaches, add them last after the onions and peppers have softened.) Remove from skillet.

Season pork chops with salt & pepper, and cook on one side in skillet approximately 5 minutes (longer for thick cut chops), or until the juices start to rise. Brown both sides equally, and remove from the skillet. Deglaze the skillet with the wine, scrapping with a wooden spoon, and let the wine reduce until the some of the alcohol has burned off, approximately 3 minutes. Add everything back and cover with sauce, allow all to come to temperature/ serve.

Serving suggestion – serve over buttered rice, with a glass of the same wine used in preparation.


Filed under writing

A Christmas Card From Paris by Calvin Davis

Nothing can compare with being in Paris during Christmas season.  Usually it’s a relatively mild time of year.  The temperature, energizing. Briskness tingles the air, but there are no freezing artic blasts or gusts that chill to the marrow. Snow? Seldom. But you can expect a frostiness that paint shop windows with coats of gray. It’s an excellent time for strolling while holding hands and observing other lover-strollers doing the same.

Along boulevards you whiff the scent of roasting chestnuts and crepes as you pass venders’ stands. “Crepe, monsieur. Une crêpe pour la dame, monsieur?” From cafés, the pungent and clean aroma of espresso coffee, rich and robust, pours across sidewalks in swells. The delicious aroma is spiced with the sound of café laughter and chatter.

And during noel, if you can visit Galerie Lafayette, the famed department store that’s topped by a dome which makes the structure seem more like a holy temple for worship than a center of commerce and fashion. Inside, the eyes feast on a delightful spectacle, for through the stained glass dome pours shafts of sunlight, painting the vast floor of merchandize with an impressionist’s palette rich in amber, scarlet and gold. Galerie Layfayette is a beehive of clerks, a sea of counters and display cases, plus row upon row of mannequins decked in the latest trendy fashions. Bottles of perfume are everywhere, and nearly as many clerks to sell them. “Perfume for your lady, sir. Perfume. Chanel, Dior, Hermes.” Amid this symphony of color, bustle and fragrances you’ll hear the hum of Christmas carols whispering from overhead speakers.

Meanwhile on the Left Bank, French families pack cafes, and amid lively conversation and laughter, sip bottle after bottle of vin rouge. And as the night ends they join voices in singing Yuletide songs, then toss their goblets over their shoulders and smile joyously as the glasses shatter.

Christmas in Paris? A banquet for the eyes. Bon appetite and joyeux Noel to all.

Calvin Davis is author of The Phantom Lady of Paris.


Filed under books, Travel


 Or Imbolc or St. Brigid’s Day or The Feast of the Purification of The Virgin or, today in 2011, Chinese New Year, it’s the day where, the groundhog sees (or doesn’t see) his shadow, predicting an early spring or the dreaded six more weeks of winter. This year his prognostication is especially dreaded, as we’ve had more than our share of snow and cold weather. As we’ve got a humdinger of a storm predicted, on this, the day before, I think we’ll get the good news of “no shadow” this year.

 At the mid point between the shortest day and the spring equinox, this is one of the ancient “cross-quarter” days. In the middle ages, people hired workers and made contracts and paid debts on these seasonal markers. Sometimes there were fairs, and always a festival in the Christian calendar to mark the occasion and further to conceal the pagan past when the sun was a deity closely observed. It seems in the heart of winter, but actually, if you check times of sunrise and sunset, you’ll see that days are speedily lengthening. If you are a sheep farmer, you know that the earliest spring lambs are being dropped into an inhospitable world. I’ll never forget watching a calf being born during a February snow storm, finally dropping, into a lanky, steaming pile atop frozen mud.  What a welcome to our world!

 It has been asked whether “red or white” goes best with groundhog, but you won’t get an answer to the question here, even if my old Joy of Cooking does explain how to clean and bake one. I’d rather watch them in high summer, roly-poly trundling between fields, or standing up, on the lookout, giving their shrill whistles of warning. They are dedicated housekeepers, carpeting their dens with leaves, and keeping both a summer den—sometimes tucked under a barn or shed—and a more private winter den for hibernation, back up in the woods or in a hedgerow between fields. Asleep against the bosom of Mother Earth, the woodchuck is supposed to be especially well-attuned to her rhythms. But, as yesterday’s sleet covered crowd at the Punxsutawney Festival kept shouting to poor sleepy Phil, we’re pretty fed up with this year’s Old Man Winter, and we REALLY want him to go away.


Filed under writing

A Book Store is Born

Hello! I am Tracy Beltran, Manager of Barnhill’s Books, Wine, Art, and Gift store in Winston-Salem North Carolina. You may also know me by my author name of Claire Collins. My work with Second Wind Publishing since it’s inception has been a lot of hard work but worth every moment I’ve spent with the authors and the readers.

And now, this relationship with Second Wind has allowed me to branch out and open a bookstore and it’s a dream come true for me. When other little girls were having tea parties, I was using my vast collection of books to start a library in my bedroom and I would loan my books to my younger sister this way. The golden look look books were labeled with check out cards and I would hold her stuffed animals hostage if the books were late being returned.

In college, I worked in the library. In February, I resigned from my position in Phoenix, packed up the family, and drove across the country to come to Winston-Salem and be part of Barnhill’s. I don’t regret that decision at all, even when we were supposed to be open on March 1, and now it’s looking more like March 20 or so. Who knew getting permits and revamping a 104 year old building would be so time consuming and difficult?

So that’s where I’ve been lately. You can follow the progress here: http://onlyatbarnhills.com/ and here: http://onlyatbarnhills.wordpress.com/

I have boxes and boxes of Second Wind Publishing books, and they are truly beautiful to hold and read. (When are you guys going to come visit me and do booksignings? Do I have to beg?) I have to remember that they are stock and belong on the shelves. Soon, they will be nestled among the bestsellers as well as other independent publishers. Speaking of which, if you are an independent publisher, email me: Tracy@onlyatbarnhills.com

We will also carry art from local artists and gift items including jewelry. Stop by and see me if you get a chance.

Tracy Beltran – Barnhill’s Manager


Filed under books